Even though it is "Hit the Fan Week"!
In other words - it's just two weeks until Christmas, and everyone is out there shopping, shopping, shopping and getting stuff together. Next week will be "Hell Week" retail -wise. Today will be my last day off (except for next Sunday) until Christmas. Blogging should be light - but I'm addicted so I'll post some stuff - hopefully it won't be as sappy as this week-end's posts.
So, anyway, the bears came out and jumped in their Christmas stocking as part of the decorations for the holiday - they are wearing crowns and doing other things. Unlike normal bears, they hibernate all year and just come out at Christmas, although there is evidence they sneak out during the summer. My tree is up and the exterior of the house is lighted, and everything is just about complete, so I'm going out to get a digital camera and post pictures on the blog of everything - I hope.
First I thought I should post advice on how to handle the holidays if you get depressed or stressed at this time - and it is a rare drunk who doesn't. (This is a public service required by the FCC.)
Anti-depressant Guidelines for the Desperate:
#1. Load up on anti-depressants and anti-panic-attack meds. (Just see your Dr. and tell him you are contemplating suicide if you have to hear one more Christmas carol.)
#2. Remember, Christmas is just another holy day of obligation - focus on the holy part.
#3. With email, you no longer have to send cards - that is so over. And when you get cards, don't open them until after Christmas - then you won't feel guilty for not sending any out.
#4. Go ahead, buy the stupid Gift Cards for presents and save yourself some time - no one ever remembers next year what they got for Christmas this year.
#5. If you insist upon visiting relatives, just say what you think when someone bugs you - my most memorable Christmases are all the family fights. Remember, you are making memories.
#6. If you don't want to go to parties, don't go, tell the host you're going to be with people you like instead.
#7. Tell your family you're going to be with people you like instead.
#8. Don't get carried away or have these great expectations about anything - it's just another day.
#9. If you have kids, remember Christmas is really for them - but don't over-do it with gifts - they have enough already.
#10. And remember, you are not Santa - so don't over-do it with anyone - we all have too much.
#11. Except for the invisible people - the poor and the marginalized, even service workers and others in invisible jobs. Be charitable, patient, kind, and understanding. Maybe tip or give a gift card. If an alcoholic asks for money, don't assume he will use it for drink - let yourself be used once in awhile.
#12. If you can't get in to get a hair cut or a style - wear a hat - you can't do everything in such a short time. Or put some gel in and they will think you're doing that bed-hair style - you don't have to be up to date - especially if you're older - nothing will help. (Which brings up the subject - old ladies should not wear eye shadow or bright lipstick - it brings out all those wrinkles - even around the mouth - and watch the perfume - you are not 20 any longer.)
#13. This is serious, if tragedy hits - don't get mad at God - we're the ones who have exaggerated the holidays - that's when you really need to remember, Christmas is just another day.
#14. Those of you who only have sad Christmas memories, don't think about it. The past is so over. Even if you are messed up - there are no rules on how to celebrate Christmas. Imagine your life as a sit-com - it always works for me!
#15. If you're lonely and are looking for love, don't disgust yourself any further by having a desperate fling at the company party - just remember Elaine on "Seinfeld".
#16. Shop early for Christmas dinner, the stores are so nuts - and be nice when some one's cart hits you in the ankle, or the Mom with three kids and an infant take over an aisle. Or be a bitch - you're in a hurry - let people know Christmas is just another day - but do it with a smile.
#17. Don't be disappointed in the gifts you receive - very few people have taste - taste is a gift. Remember what they say, "It's better to get nothing at all than something awful." (I had to leave a sweater at my parents house one year, it was patchwork with leather squares. I had to leave it - really.)
#18. If you do home-made gifts, don't expect Ooooo's and Ahhhhh's except from grandma.
#19. If you go to mid-night Mass, and you're the devout type, don't be scandalized if it smells like a barroom, or that some hussey hardly has any clothes on under her coat. Be grateful they wanted to come to Mass and remember, one of the shepherds may have been drinking that first Christmas Eve as well, it was cold in those fields.
#20. Finally, relish Christmas morning - get up about 3AM and look at the lights, then go to the first Mass - delight in the quiet, adore the Infant Jesus, in the still, quiet of the night - then you will discover the true meaning of Christmas - I promise - very few people think of him amidst all the celebrations, and at that time, they are all asleep.
(Oh! I hope I make it to Christmas!)
DISCLAIMER: I just got up at 10AM - my day off and my throat is so swollen I look like I have a goiter - and I posted this first thing. It was only after I posted this that I read Eric at the Daily Eudemon - he did an advice list as well. What if he and I think alike? I doubt it - he's sane - I'm sure it was simply a coincidence. Eric's is much funnier - a must read.