Saturday, December 20, 2014
It has been a long year for me. I have accomplished very little in the way of writing. There are roughly twelve beginnings of Blogs that I started and either dismissed, forgot about or just got to busy to finish. SO here I am. Waiting for my next phone call or email wondering what all the fuss is about. What I see lately is obsession. Obsession to find the perfect gift. Obsession to host a perfect party. Obsession to be the people we should be everyday of our lives. Don’t get me wrong. A little OCD isn’t bad. If I hadn’t obsessed about learning to tie my shoes I would still be wearing Velcro sneakers or sandals with my black socks. Last year was a good OCD year for me. It’s this time of year, for me, that I start to remember all the wonderful things I promised myself I would do. I would work less. Spend more time with family and friends. Work on being calmer and more patient. Get my back waxed, and finally figure out how to use floss without hurting myself. I started off really well but things really slid down the cliff after the third day of that bullshit. Perfection is one of those hazy terms that does not mean the same thing to every person. The notion having a ‘perfect’ party or Christmas Dinner is insane. There will never be a perfect gift. There will be great Christmas Dinners and Great parties and great gifts…but chasing the dream of perfection can be dangerous. I’m not saying don’t try. I’m saying if you wear your self out or get frustrated trying to do anything perfect, well, that thing isn’t perfect. You sacrificed yourself for an idea or perception and if you lose the joy of the moment then you have not succeeded in being perfect. Do yourself a favour this Christmas. Enjoy yourself. Don’t go all OCD because dinner was not served precisely at 630pm. So your mom already bought herself a set of ‘perfect’ oven mitts. Now she has two sets. Your brother had a few too many rye and cokes, tripped over the ottoman and took out aunt Grace. Are they okay? Laugh. Why laugh? Remember you have family. You have food and drinks and a great opportunity to have fun and remember why these people mean so much to you. That’s about the closest thing to perfect I can think of. The notion of Christmas is great. Christmas itself has turned all of us into lunatics. Somewhere at some time we sold out to the consumerism of the season. Shop shop shop. Buy buy buy. Fight with crowds. Fight for parking. Get so worn down that you want to punch the Salvation Army bell ringer in the throat. Why? What’s the gain? We see it happening. We know deep down that’s insane but we keep doing it-which is the definition of insanity. Un stuff your Christmas. Get the whip out and tame the OCD monster. Chase that thing back into its Pandora’s Box. Slam the lid down, wrap that sucker up with chains, lock it and melt the key. Revel at the insanity that is Christmas. Dance a jig with your neighbour. Dance a jig with your neighbour’s dog. Have fun. For the love of all that is Holy relax and enjoy your time with friends and family. My Prozac is wearing off so I must away. Merry Christmas to all!
Friday, December 19, 2014
If you ever received a “Christmas Letter”, or been allowed to read one you may already know where I’m going with this. Basically, the Christmas Letter consists of two or three pages of letter paper, double sided print and possibly one or two pictures Scotch taped crudely to the paper. It contains endless run on sentences and fails in its attempt to relay how and what a specific family has been doing since the last time you received the almost identical tome a year prior. What you need to understand is that the Christmas Letter’s intent is to make the writer’s “friends” think her life is wonderful and that theirs sucks. To accomplish this, the writer, typically female, never held a job in her life, highly opinionated and usually wrong about everything she professes to tell people… lies. Now I don’t think the writer knows that she is lying. It’s just that she is so out of touch with reality and blind to real fact that she feels that what she writes is the Holy Gospel of what her and her family have done throughout the last year. Simple interpretation of a Christmas Letter is never easy. As one can never be sure what far away happy place the writer of the letter is in while the letter is being written. It is easiest just to assume that every sentence on the multiple sheets of paper is lie. Examples “This may very well have been our most exciting year to date!” This is a lie. Even if viewed subjectively you know these people are about as interesting and fun filled as dry white toast. “Christie is still a free spirit and we couldn’t be more excited by her intrigue with different cultures.” This is also a lie. Christie has been in and out of rehab since she was fourteen. Currently she is shacked up with a Jamaican Weed King and Oh God please don’t let her get pregnant. “Charlie is still very interested in pursuing law and spends most of his time studying.” False. Charlie can’t stand the sight, thought or sound of his mother so he locks himself in his room. He has taken to rage and has spent multiple months in county lock up for yelling obscenities and flashing the Womens League at that bi-monthly white glove picnics. “Ken is still go go go with the company. He just won’t retire and I really think the Bumble Brothers Stapler Works would go out of business if he retired. He’s very loyal and dedicated.” Ken has been installing the same retainer spring in staplers for 40 years. He hates his job but can’t stand the thought of retiring and having to spend more time with his nattering, never happy wife. Ken also has a great fear of retiring and at some point having to eat dog kibble as sustenance because his wife won’t stop buying crap she doesn’t need with money she doesn’t have. Ken prays for the angel of death to release from his shackles of servitude. “Since my accident I have been working on healing myself. I have found a Shaman healer who has done wonders for me physically and emotionally!” My plastic surgeon’s name is Tonto RedCLoud. He caused my lips to swell up to gargantuan proportions- this was my “accident”. Since I threatened to sue him I have had boob, butt, face, lipo and botox surgeries on the house. Dr. Tonto says I am pretty and that makes me feel good. Generally I feel good when I see a Christmas letter. It makes me realize that although my life isn’t perfect, I don’t have to make crap up in an attempt to elevate myself or drag others down. My crap is my crap and I hope you enjoy a crapless Christmas.