Tag Archives: christmas

O Christmas Box, O Christmas Box (via On Parenting at the Washington Post)

High Angle View of Empty Cardboard Box with Open Flaps on Shiny Hardwood Floor - Moving or Shipping Concept Image

Sweet.

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On Parenting at the Washington Post — Generally speaking, Christmas trees arrive in one of two ways: 1. You pack a saw and rope and drive to a Cut Your Own Tree Farm, which makes you feel like a beefy, whiskey-swilling, red-bearded lumberjack army-crawling through dirt and pine needles and probably fire ants until you ask a 19-year-old to help you tie it to the top of your Honda Odyssey; or 2. You go to the attic and retrieve the Giant Box of Fake Christmas tree, which you purchased some years ago from, hypothetically speaking, a Kmart in east-central Indiana.

My family went with Option B. As I was fortunate enough to have both a Christmas-loving family and unusually tall ceilings, our fake tree was a goliath, a monstrous army-grade artificial Douglas fir Fraser pine (okay, I have no idea what it really was, I slept through college horticulture) that endured for nearly a decade. It was rich, plush and lifelike, even if it smelled less like evocative forest pine and more like the inside of a Kmart in east-central Indiana.

Mostly, it came in a box.

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Should You Tell Older Kids About Santa? We Say Yes, and Maybe No (via Washington Post)

 

polar-express

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On Parenting at the Washington Post (with Robyn Passante) — How old is too old to believe? Five? Eight? Twelve years old?

We posed this question to two writers with children in varying stages of the Santa game: Robyn’s sons are 8 and 6, and Jeff’s are 11 and 4. Two summers ago, Jeff’s oldest discovered the truth about Santa (from a cartoon tiger, long story), only to spend the next 18 months… well, you’ll see. Here’s their take on how — and when — to tell the secret of Santa.

Jeff: So here’s what I’m facing: My sixth-grader will be 12 in February. He’s known about Santa for like a year and a half. (He read it in “Calvin and Hobbes,” which I’m a little heartbroken about.)

Robyn: Uh, my third-grader is obsessed with Calvin. And spends hours reading the strips to my 6-year-old. THIS IS NOT GOOD NEWS.

Jeff: We were leaving a short weekend at the Disney water parks. I’m packing the car in the parking lot, buckling the 2-year-old in his car seat, and the older asks, tremulously, “So, um, Santa is you guys, right?” Santa and leaving Disney in the same night — we like to package our traumatic kid events when possible.

Robyn: What did you say?

 

Read the full conversation over at On Parenting at the Washington Post.

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You almost certainly have snakes in your Christmas tree. Sorry.

Type "Christmas snake" into Google Images. It's fantastic

GateHouse — There are things that are OK, and there are things that are Not OK, and there are things that are Super Not OK, and there are things that are So Not OK That They Make You Slap Your Face And Run To Your Momma, and that is what brings us to the headline “Two Families Find Live Snakes Hiding In Christmas Trees.”

If you needed any more evidence that it’s just wiser to buy a plastic, Taiwanese factory-produced tree at Lowe’s, slap it in a stand and be done in time for the Steelers game, may I present you with the notion that your fancypants Real Tree You Mightily Chopped Down In A Field With The Help Of A Bearded Woodsman Named Fjurg The Sweaty probably contains snakes.

Christmas trees, according to everyone, are the second least-favorable places you can find a snake, the first being, say it with me, the toilet. This is my fourth-greatest fear in life, snakes in the toilet, directly behind clowns, the Fox Business Channel and having my picture taken while scuba diving in the ocean but then having the photographer start gesturing wildly and flailing around because there’s a whale swimming up behind me. That scene in “Finding Nemo” where the whale fades into view and eats the neurotic fish and Ellen? YEAH, WORST FEAR OF LIFE. Most of my more acute fears in life end up in Pixar movies. Weirdest thing.

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[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=FpdDXbwBRv0]

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My Secret Santa is an unforgivable failure

GateHouse — So I’m in a Secret Santa thing here in the office, and like so many things about Christmas, it’s making me reach for the wine bottle well before my usual 10 a.m. start time, because I have now received no gift from my Secret Santa for the SECOND CONSECUTIVE DAY. This keeps up, I’m gonna start throwing elves.

Let me back up: No, I don’t hate Christmas, except the shopping and parking and most of the music and the way it makes me engage in the near-impossible task of actually absorbing more debt into my increasingly hilarious floral arrangement of credit cards (somewhere in Visa Fortress, I’m fairly well convinced that a group of doughy shareholders does the “Beat It” dance every time they see my name).

And yes, I know it’s better to give that receive, thank you very much, hippie Democrats, Charlie Brown and the nagging voice in my head that keeps me awake every single night.

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Granville Williams – Santa Claus Is Skaing To Town.mp3

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Barack Obama hates Charlie Brown, America, your mom, says Russell Wiseman, Guy On The Internet, so let’s all listen up

Tree ruined by The Media.

Tree ruined by The Media.

GateHouse — IMPORTANT CARTOON-AND-BLACK PRESIDENT ALERT: In addition to being a Muslim Kenyan chain-smoking Bolshevik Hitler-loving child-indoctrinating reality-TV-contestant-inviting Will.I.Am fan, Barack Obama hates Charlie Brown. This is actually no great shakes because most of the “Peanuts” kids hate Charlie Brown, but Obama hates Charlie Brown in a way that efficiently connotes his hatred of America as well. (If America wanted to kick the football Obama would be all like, “Whiff, suckers,” and then throw mayonaise on the Little Red-Haired Girl.)

And I have proof, because of Facebook, and Tennessee, in that order.

Last week’s airing of “A Charlie Brown Christmas,” the special that’s been beloved for decades despite being about 25 solid minutes of the emotional abuse of a child, was pre-empted on the television machine by Herr President Omuslim’s speech about his strategy for the war in Afghanistan, or some such nonsense you could read about on the crawl under the Tiger-sexting stuff anyway.

Socialists wouldn’t blink a red eye at this transgression, but it COMPLETELY CHEESED OFF the mayor of Arlington, Tenn., a Very Real American named Russell Wiseman, who looks in his mug shot as though he is desperate to sell you a Toyota this very instant. Wiseman wrote on his Facebook page, which has 1,600 friends, the following, which I am quoting directly so as to preserve his deliciously roguish twist on spelling and grammar: “Ok, so, this is total crap, we sit the kids down to watch ‘The Charlie Brown Christmas Special’ and our muslim president is there, what a load…..try to convince me that wasn’t done on purpose. Ask the man if he believes that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and he will give you a 10 minute disertation about it….w…hen the answer should simply be ‘yes’….”

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http://bit.ly/4GzyS5

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Wonderful Christmas Hell

Every year, to decorate the holiday season with heaping helpings of hideous terror, the elftastic Jason Hare and the lovely and talented Jefito furnish The 25 Days of Mellowmas, in which they – on purpose, mind you – absorb some of the season’s most bowel-clenching music, much of which has been recorded by Michael McDonald.

Because they are extremely friendly elves, they let me turn in this small piece on “Wonderful Christmastime,” which I have contended for years is the worst piece of music in the history of recorded human history, and which fellow blogger Py Korry remixed into a full nine-minutes of nogtastic horror. So to squeeze one last drop out of your fruit of holiday joy, head over to JasonHare.com for a quick walk into the first circle of “Wonderful Christmas Hell.”

God bless us, every one.


A fat Santa is an awesome Santa

GateHouse There are a lot of things wrong with Santa Claus — the tobacco addiction, the repeated breaking and entering, the vanishing for 364 consecutive days without explanation — but to that long and deplorable list ABC News has added the following: Santa Claus may be sending the wrong body message to children.

Indeed, in a video clip posted this week on abcnews.com, there stands a blow-dried twerp in a shiny suit, arguing with a disgustingly faked sense of concern that “the big belly will send a bad message to kids,” specifically the millions upon millions of kids who look at Santa Claus not as a magical elf who brings free presents every year, but as the standard for sheer physical magnificence and the primary reason they keep going to gym class every week.

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“Star Trek” caskets: The voyage home

Comes in Regular, Large and GHARRRDDAKAKH

GateHouse — If you are running out of gift ideas and time this Christmas season — and, let’s be honest, you are, I can see the cold desperation in your eyes — boy, do I have good news for you. But I must warn you that it’s gonna hinge a little bit on what your definition of “good news” is; I’m being honest when I say that when you buy someone a casket for Christmas and watch them unwrap it, it’s going to make things more than a little weird around the old family hearth for a good 15 minutes or so. (Also, it’s gonna take a ridiculous amount of wrapping paper; you may want to hit the Sam’s Club. Try and find a good hiding place for it, too: You can’t just hide a casket under the bed. Well, you can, but you need a super-tall bed, and still it would probably freak the bejesus out of the kids.)

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The hideous terrors of Black Plague Friday

Oh sure, they may look friendly and sweatpantsed, but every single soul in this picture would kill another with her bare, trembling hands.

GateHouse — If you’re like me, you spent at least part of your middle or high school education in a gym class, and if you’re like me, you looked forward to this about as much as you would being blasted in the gut with a fire hose full of extremely old cottage cheese, because if you’re like me, you were about 75 pounds in high school, had your dad cut your hair and never once in your life anticipated getting your books knocked out of your hands in the hallways (seriously, you would think after three years, some form of primal defense mechanism would evolve, but apparently I’m a walking argument against Darwinism, at least as it pertains to book-knocking, as well as pantsings).

Anyway, if you had this gym class, you probably played dodgeball, which is a game that takes otherwise ordinary, often friendly individuals and turns them into drooling, vicious beasts whose sole goals in life revolve around violence, revenge and bloodthirstyness (spellcheck doesn’t like that word, but I’m keeping it). Dodgeball was brutal and merciless, it eventually degenerated into a ruleless free-for-all, it went on under the implicit OK of the supervisory figure ostensibly there to handle such things and it resulted in chaos, injury, grief, sorrow and wedgies. And prior to just a few days ago, I figured it was as close as we humans got to becoming one with our friends in the pure, cold animal kingdom, until, of course, I went shopping on Black Friday.

Black Friday is so named because that sounds sort of like Black Plague Friday, which, along with dodgeball, are two things I would rather experience again in lieu of going to a store on the day after Thanksgiving. I can think of a number of reasons I would rather have a Black Plague Friday instead of the one with the shopping, such as:

  1. On Black Plague Friday, people would drive smarter, mostly because they would be motoring around in horses and oxen instead of automobiles, but also because people on Black Friday drive as though everyone else in the planet is engaged in a battle to the death for the last two Pop-Tarts on Earth. Apparently bargains give the illusion of competition, and competition makes people want to run over things with giant SUVs.
  2. On Black Plague Friday, people would not get up at absurd hours to drive to a Best Buy, largely because, again, there were very few Best Buys available in the 14th century, except in Venice, but also because it stands to reason that people in the 14th century would not get nearly so wrapped up in the potential procurement of an absurdly large television, what with their having to fight off orcs and evil dwarves and Robin Hood and all.
  3. On Black Plague Friday, people in Customer Service would look less like they are dreaming up ways to kill themselves with their belts. (I am not sure where there would be customer service in 14th-century Asia, but let’s go with “down at the port.”)

Now don’t get me wrong — I can’t claim to have done the craziest of the crazy Black Friday stuff: I didn’t do the midnight sales, didn’t queue up at the electronics store at 3 a.m. so as to land a Blu-Ray player for nine bucks. When midnight on America’s Shopping Day rolled around, I was where I always am: face down on the living room rug with a bottle of Wild Turkey rolling around next to my right hand.

But I did venture out later on, because I am, in the modern shopping lingo, an unconscionable idiot, and although I didn’t get the “Halo 3” edition of the Xbox 360 that, according the posters screaming at me all day long, is an item without which your friends will abandon you in minutes, I did learn several important things about human nature: 1. Human nature is terrifying. 2. Old women will literally bump their cart into you twice if you are trying to get around them in the toy aisle. 3. Apparently there is a game in which you and a few friends can play fake instruments and pretend like you’re in a real rock band, which is pretty much what’s going on with Nickelback these days, and 4. You know that weird relative you have who shows up at Christmas with handmade gifts and self-knitted scarves and presents they carved out of the bark on the trees in the back yard? I am now that guy. Next year, everyone on my list is getting like necklaces made out of twigs and lawn clippings that I whittle myself. A couple of years of that, I might even get good enough to whittle an Xbox.


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