Works for children too, I hear:
Category Archives: Holidays
‘Twas the day before Christmas and whilst cleaning the house,
Southern Beale did realize with a terrible shout:
“OMG I FORGOT ALL ABOUT ANIMAL CRUELTY SANTA!”
So down from the closet he did appear,
Capturing birds and animal pelts all in good cheer,
A reminder to all critters, both far and near,
To not claw the couch or chew the veneer.
And now good wishes for happiness and no tears,
Oh loyal readers and your furry companions, I lift up my beer:
Yes and felines, and canines, and rodents, and deer!
Forgive the bad rhyme (I’m on quite a tear!)
One final good thought I leave with you here:
Best wishes of the season, until the New Year!
I’ll admit it, when my local news gleefully reported that fighter jets would accompany Santa’s sleigh this year in the traditional “NORAD tracker,” I was pretty outraged. Silly thing, I know: it’s Santa Claus, who gives a shit. But I do, because it’s for kids, and glorifying war to kids is revolting.
Honestly, I’m so offended by the constant rah-rah pro-military BS which has infiltrated every aspect of American life. This was the last straw. Why does Santa Claus need fighter jets, anyway? Mr. Beale joked it was to make it through Syrian airspace so he could bring presents to kids in Israel. Apparently everyone else decided it was Russia.
So I was relieved to learn that I wasn’t the only person ticked off by this glorification of weapons of war to children. In fact, quite a few children’s advocates were offended.
I know y’all wouldn’t believe it but it does take a lot for me to go over the edge. I do stand and politely clap during the military salute at hockey games, despite the wretched Lee Greenwood track. But I put my foot down when they played an Army video of, I shit you not, bombs dropping on buildings. This was displayed on the JumboTron before a game one year, accompanied by a loud rock and roll track. Seeing small children with no clue what that represented cheering along turned my stomach. I called the operations office of the hockey team the next day and we never saw anything like that again.
“Support the troops” does not mean glorifying war. And by all means, this “back door recruiting” to kids is alarming. It’s no different than using Joe Camel to sell tobacco to children.
Knock it off, America.
This landed in my mailbox this morning, under the subject line “Knock Down, Drag Out Savings.” Sender was “Walmart.”
Bwaahaa. It’s those rascals, the Yes Men.
At my first Thanksgiving with Mr. Beale’s family, the women all invited me to join them on their traditional Black Friday shopping trip to the mall in Evansville, Indiana. I think I responded with something like, “I’d rather stick pins in my eyes, thanks.” I honestly never thought I’d meet someone who actually shopped on the Friday after Thanksgiving. And in a mall, no less? I simply don’t hate myself that much.
Thanksgiving has always been the one holiday that defied commercialization. Non-religious and a-political, it was the last honest holiday. It centered on three core American values: family, food and television.
But no more. Now we’re all arguing over Walmart and Best Buy making their underpaid employees work on Thanksgiving Day, and we’re treated to Black Friday Brawls on the TV as people behave like children fighting over toys.
Another cherished American holiday relegated to the dustbin thanks to Glorious Capitalism. Baaah.
Mr. Beale and I bugged out of the family get together early because we have a hockey game tonight (Go Preds!). That was a blessing because someone in the family decided it was a good idea to dress a 3-year-old in shoes which squeak every time the kid takes a step. After about five minutes I was ready to kill someone.
Here’s wishing all of my readers a wonderful, squeak-free Thanksgiving.
This morning I walked the dog down my street and saw a blue men’s button-down shirt lying in a puddle at the end of someone’s driveway. A few doors down a very solid, very permanent brick mailbox lay in rubble at the end of another driveway. Clearly someone(s) had a happy new year last night. Not so the dead opossum I saw further down the street. I’m trying to decide if all three things were connected somehow (hit a possum, veered into a mailbox, took a shirt off because …?)
Anyway, welcome to 2013. There’s actually news! I have a fiscal cliff post up over at First Draft. Give it a look-see.
I’m sure y’all will be shocked to learn that I’m not one to get hung up on tradition. I’ve already taken down the tree, packed up the Christmas crap, and returned the house to normal. This is a new record for me; usually I do it on New Year’s Day. But the way the holiday fell this year gave me an extra weekend to clean up and I am overjoyed to have everything back to normal before New Year’s Eve. You know what? Christmas is messy and a lot of work and involves turning my home inside out for a month and I hate it. Also, you people who keep your tree and lights up until Valentine’s Day? Just, no. Seriously, get a new hobby.
I’ve heard some pretty crazy New Year’s superstitions, like how you aren’t supposed to take anything out of the house on New Years Day because you might do without it in the coming year. Or how you’re not supposed to do laundry on New Years Day, as you could wash away the life of a loved one. Okay, who thinks that last one was invented by some overworked housewife who just wanted a day off?
The New Year is filled with lots of weird traditions too, and I don’t mean the “getting drunk and passing out in Times Square” kind, either. Someone told me that at midnight you’re supposed to open the back door to let the old year out and the front door to let the new year in. I think if we did that we’d spend the rest of the night herding cats back into the house. Also, I’ve heard of this thing where you put money outside the front door before the year goes out, then bring it back inside when the New Year arrives — all without crossing the threshold.
I do have one thing I do every New Year’s Eve. I’ve written about my New Year’s Eve burn list here before; that’s where I make a list of all the things I don’t want to take into the new year, then go outside and burn it. And people, it works! Last year I put the Tea Party and Sarah Palin on the list and look what happened. I rest my case.
I haven’t really devoted much thought to my list this year but we’ve got lots of candidates for burning. There are some Tennessee Republicans whose names will make the list this year for sure. Also probably the NRA, Fox News, Rush Limbaugh, and climate change deniers. Those last two are on the list every year, by the way. Some funk is just too nasty to burn off all in one year.
New Year’s Day has a lot of food traditions. In the South you’re supposed to eat black-eyed peas cooked with ham and collard greens; I think it’s supposed to symbolize good luck, love and money or some such. People, I have tried this tradition and I just can’t do it, I just don’t like the dish. Southern food and I do not get along, too bland, too starchy, too salty, too fatty. So Mr. Beale and I are going to start a new tradition. We’re making margaritas and tacos tomorrow. The green stuff can symbolize money, the golden taco shells and cheddar cheese can be good luck, the meat and tomatoes can be romance, and the onion can be excitement or something. Why the hell not?
So, I would love to hear what your New Year’s Eve traditions/superstitions are. What’s on the agenda for tonight?