Time to shout “humbug” or “hallelujah”? How do the years fly by so quickly, calendar pages flipping as if channeling special effects in some forties-era black and white movie? “Rudolph” Astaire, Burl “Frosty” Ives, Grinch Jim Carrey, beleaguered banker James Stewart, and Bad Santa Billy Bob Thornton re-running all across our television sets, which will be transformed technologically into “high definition” within the blink of a February eye.
Tinsel, miniature lights, shopping during a Great Recession-Depression credit crunch, graceful frightened deer flushed toward highway headlights while fleeing zealous Mister McGregors outfitted in camouflage jumpsuits, turkeys gobbling out their final breaths, parties galore, nativity displays and toys for tots–how do we land at this same spot in time year after year? Sweetness and generosity characterize this frantic oncoming season of giving and getting, but why does the spirit of Christmas and Thanksgiving bloom only once per year?
Alright, I’ll bite. Even sprinkled a few Santa Clauses about the living room, one having been tossed into the den LAST Christmas onto a pile of stuff upon a chair….never even returned him upstairs to the year-round St. Nick-themed bed-room, not for one solid year’s duration. Holiday greetings from a shrinking number of persistent Hall-mark card-senders remain crammed into a dining room hutch cubby hole–TWO years’ worth! Only an archaeological dig might reveal other left-over yuletide memories, ranging from fruit-cake crumbs beneath couch cushions, since the sixties, to an errant, whittled, parent-less baby Jesus, from perhaps a dozen seasons past, nestled among sheet music atop the piano. All covered with snow, summer-time porch furniture and deceased geraniums, suddenly eerily yet defiantly out of sync, suggest that “tempus fugit” holds significance for more than just Latins.
Suggestion! Reward yourself during this surreal 2008-2009 holiday season as each of us awaits an end to economic doldrums, while anticipating cabinet appointments, an undoubtedly unique inaugural ceremony, and an uncertain future. I have chosen to organize my closet…the closet of my childhood…such an accomplishment awaits! The possibility of some slight measure of control over a practically impossible situation will lighten this heart of mine. Of course, this clothes-space equates to the size of a postage stamp, and therein lies the problem–Aye, the rub! No longer a skinny teen-ager, my derriere bumps into everything while navigating about in the teensiest upstairs God ever created; a queen-sized bed in a dwarf-sized room presents a real decorator’s dilemma. Yes, a re-working of the entire second floor looms upon the horizon for the new year. Eureka ! Enjoy what we already have, not such a novel idea. Takes me back to the 1950s when life seemed simple and happy and good, phonograph music floated lyrics to live by and swoon to, one automobile carried all of us everywhere, a single bathroom was adequate, neighbors played canasta or bridge with one another, and the Christmas spirit existed as a year-round deal. Lord, I guess I’m old now. I sound just like my parents. Hallelujah! Happy holidays!