Having spent the majority of my formative years in the southern* U.S., to me the phrase “white Christmas” meant we were spending it at the beach.
When I lived in Plantation, Florida, Santa Claus would ride through my neighborhood on top of a flashing, honking fire truck, throwing candy canes. It was loud and stupid and awesome.
Though the weather was often in the 70s, every Christmas Eve I insisted on wearing footed blanket pajamas to bed – for about 10 minutes, until heatstroke started to set in.
Grade school holiday pageants** are a gateway drug, tempting children to experiment with community theater... or worse.
I never got to play the Virgin Mary in the school Christmas pageant because of my red hair.*** However, I did get to play a business woman one year. I'm still not really sure what that was about.
When setting out Santa's plate of milk and cookies before going to bed on Christmas Eve, I often wondered if he might not prefer a cold beer and some pretzels to cut the sweetness and add a little variety to the evening. Knowing what I know now, he probably would have.
Upon moving to a home with a fireplace, I realized that the chief obstacle to Santa getting down the chimney was not the diameter, but the vast number of dead squirrels collected inside.
Every year as a kid, I could look forward to receiving socks from my grandmother. They were generally knee length, had some ridiculous pattern, and were always outrageously red. She'd also send my father a liter of whiskey. Grandma had her moments.
Growing up, my family always had an artificial tree. As a newlywed in Oklahoma, I bought my first real tree – a potted miniature pine. It was hit by lightning – while sitting on the mantlepiece over my fireplace, inside of our apartment. I have not had a Christmas tree since.
Today's lesson: I'm really, really, super self-absorbed.
Next: Something that ultimately serves my ego, no doubt.
*Georgia, Florida, and Alabama, if you're curious.
**No one can rock a pair of glitter-and-poster-board wings like me.
***Because everyone knows Mary was a blond, right?