December 21 - December 27, 1995

Eighth Day

HOLIDAY CHILL: I am a firm believer in the idea that holidays should not be held every year. As soon as you've got the holly in the garbage it's time to send valentines out to all your lovers.

But we are historically holiday-programmed. Ever since kindergarten we've been handed a paper plate and told to turn it into a pumpkin, a turkey, a Christmas wreath, a valentine. Through this seasonal training some of us become Martha Stewart and turn pine cones into guest houses, and the rest of us buy frozen cookie dough and call it Christmas.

So, ease up. Especially you girls, who, for some reason, take on all the holiday hoopla yourselves. Mary had the darn baby in that cold stable and that's our contribution. Him.

Let's face it, most men would not even notice the holiday season if it weren't for some female figure who thinks she's Clara from the Nutcracker urging them on.

Of course, men do like to come up with ideas for the holidays. I think that comes from standing in the grocery line with that six-pack after work. After checking out December's Cosmo Girl, they're inundated with glossy magazine covers smothered in warm, multicolored afghans draped over warm, chestnut-colored rocking chairs glowing warmly beside the perfect fire. Christmas, they think. Family, they forget. A party, they sing!

Then they come home in good cheer and announce that this year we'll throw the best party yet. We'll put up the tree and lights early, send invites, cook omelets to order. So what happens?

Assuming there's a woman (read: control issue) in the house, she can't help but take over. She wants this kind of tree, the lights have to be strung in this fashion, and by the way the house needs to be painted and the sofa recovered. This, then, is the problem: Women, for fear of not having everything done the best way (their way), take on every holiday headache imaginable, from parties to gifts. Let it go, girls.

Did someone say gifts? Next problem. Even if you have money and inclination to shop and have decided to let the man in your life purchase that cheap calendar for his boss, the problem is, what to get him. Because, of course, he doesn't need anything. The conversation goes something like this:

She: What do you want for Xmas this year, hunny bunny? He: I don't know. She: Do you want a green sweater to go with those new pants you never wear? He: I have a sweater. She: But you don't have a green sweater. He: I don't need a sweater. She: How about a watch where the alarm doesn't go off every six minutes? He: I like this watch. She: But those rubber bands doing double duty as a watchband are really kind of tacky. He: It's fine.

Just stop. Get a glass, fill halfway with amber beverage of your choice and top off with high-fat Egg Nog. Gulp vigorously. Grab a pfeffernüsse or two or three and stuff. Happy Holidays to you and yours, warriors.
--Hannah Glasston

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December 21 - December 27, 1995

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