The holidays, starting with Thanksgiving and ending after New Years, is a time I could do without. This year I’ve obliterated them completely. No Christmas tree, not one gift will be purchased, the house is cluttered and what christmas cookies I made plus the ones given to me have long been consumed, mostly as an entire meal. Yes, I ate them as a meal.
Trust me, you don’t want to depend on me for providing any type of holiday spirit. I don’t decorate and I’m not perky. If you want to come by and drink spiked eggnog and talk about books, that would be great. Its not that I’m a scrooge, its just the rampant commercialism and stressed out people trying to find money they don’t have to buy presents they don’t need doesn’t inspire me. Combine that with how I’ve nearly been killed twice this week alone from accelerating careening SUV’s with blonde ladies at the wheel screaming into a cell phone with her 2.2 kids strapped in the back watching a video, makes me want to hide until spring.
Now, if you scrape and scrape the layers of all this crap out of the way, behind all the glitz and glitter and marketing ploys, you will find some of the most precious and caring stories of love and generosity that seem to come out only at this time of year. That part I love, the true magic of the human spirit. That inspires me. But I also don’t feel that it should be limited to one part of the year. Part of the reason that my husband and I don’t exchange gifts is that we strive to feel the essence of Christmas and the spirit of giving throughout the entire year. Well, that and the fact that he has horrible gift anxiety that isn’t worth provoking.
So I find that if I go somewhere in nature or a place with books or something similar, I can escape the holidays. Its difficult but do-able. I’m lost in my thoughts as I run through my options of the day of where to hide and write and read. My stomach beckons me into the fast food drive through as “Bill” welcomes me to Jack in the Box, where they serve breakfast the whole live-long day….I sit stunned at his authentic, hysterical greeting and then lose it. His comment strikes me as the funniest thing I’ve heard in days and I proceed to laugh right into his loudspeaker. “Bill” caught me by surprise with his audition-ready rehearsed ,Waiting for Guffman phrase. He seriously cracked me up breaking the spell of sadness I’ve been sitting with. I’m struck with the wonderful, recently unfamiliar feeling of joy. Its been days and I’ve been the walking dead. I’m wondering if “Bill” was the catalyst to me finding my moment of bliss or if I have just finally crossed over into insanity. I order my food and wait excitedly to chat with him more at the pick up window.
I’m bummed that he is busy and can’t chat when I arrive realizing that his humor wasn’t specifically meant for me but for all who drive through. He’s completely unaware of the gift he’s given me. Its okay, I’ll take the joy anyway. I’m so happily munching away on my breakfast sandwich that I’ve almost finished it before I realize that they forgot to put the bacon on it. And yes, I eat bacon too.