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DO YOU realize
As usual, I'm not ready, but I know I am not alone. Most men still haven't given the holidays much thought.
Men treat Christmas like they treat illnesses; they ignore the symptoms in the hope that they will go away. Then, at the last minute, they panic.
It is hard to determine when the Christmas season starts these days. Some say it begins with Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, but most stores begin putting out Christmas wares the day after Halloween.
Churches say the Christmas season starts with Advent, which begins the fourth Sunday before Christmas, while kids start getting the holiday spirit when they see Santa Claus in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.
But the season is not officially under way until Sears, in TV ads, starts peddling every manner of wrench known to man. It wants women to think that every man's secret fantasy is to own a battery-operated screwdriver.
Women, of course, know that men have other visions of sugar-plums in their heads.
I tend to think the Christmas season begins when the first fight occurs over a publicly placed Nativity scene.
Every year we have the same battle. A Nativity scene goes up on government property and the atheists and agnostics come out of the woodwork to challenge it.
If agnostics believe in nothing, how can they get so worked up over something as meaningless to them as religion?
Maybe they really don't and are just intent on making a point or finding a way to punish the government.
Each year, the war over separation of church and state is renewed and the Constitution gets thrown into the religious fray.
Listen, until we take "In God We Trust" off our money, this is still a Christian country and anyone who says the Founding Fathers weren't in support of Christmas is nuts!
What the framers of the Constitution meant, at least in my not-so-humble opinion, was that we should let every religion celebrate its sacred holidays in its own way.
So if agnostics want to celebrate believing in nothing by sitting on the courthouse lawn and doing nothing, hey, that's OK by me. Just leave Christmas alone.
As you may have noticed, I'm not real politically correct.
Reports indicate that the sale of toys has dropped during each of the past four Christmas seasons.
Not necessarily. It used to be that a 10-year-old boy wanted an electric train or a cowboy outfit for Christmas and a 10-year-old girl wanted a doll.
No more. Now 10-year-olds want smartphones, iPods and computers. In other words, kids who once wanted toys now want the latest expensive technology.
Kids are growing up too fast these days.
My oldest daughter, Jayme, and I generally get into a big argument at the beginning of each Christmas season. If she had her way, she would put up a tree on the fifth of July. Somehow she relents until the day after Thanksgiving, when she wants to take an ax in hand and, à la Chevy Chase, head out into the fields.
I, on the other hand, warn that getting a tree too early will cause it to dry out before Christmas, catch fire and burn down the house.
Jayme usually wins the battle. The house hasn't burned down yet, but I swear there are still pine needles in corners from four Christmases past. And, yes, I do add water
Anyhow, Christmas is almost here and I am not ready. A little snow, of course, might get me in the holiday spirit. A lot of snow (measured in feet) definitely would.
For most men, the best part of Christmas is the hope that it will eventually be over. Of course, then you've got to climb up on that roof and take those durn lights down!
Why not just leave them up and get an early start on next Christmas?
Most men would vote for that.