Monday, January 3, 2011

Chernobyl, Cranberries, and Daiquiris

I was not feeling the magic of Christmas this year, for no particular reason.  Therefore, I believe I have an obligation to create an illusion of 2010 holiday bliss through humorous review.  Yes, tacky Christmas decorations is an overused source of amusement this time of year, but just roll with me… 

I decided not to hang my giant, lighted Christmas trees ornaments in the front yard trees this year for two reasons:  one..I was too lazy; and two, I was protesting my neighborhood’s choice of collective holiday decor.  Since number one is self-explanatory, let me further expound on number two.

It was too early to even think about decorating...sometime before Thanksgiving, because the anxiety attacks over holiday weight gain had not started...Anyway, I was coming home from work, turned into my sleepy little middle class suburbia, and I see IT, more accurately, I notice IT.  IT being Redneck Chernobyl Christmas.  My heart was in my throat....IT surrounded my house.  As a matter of fact, my house was the only one in the neighborhood that sat untrimmed.  The Yuletide Lawn Desecration included a potpourri of inflatables, lights, ribbons, bows, and packages sturdy enough to endure mid-North Carolina's unpredictable winter weather.  Yes, the tinseled vomitus was anchored down from property line to property line with multiple, industrial pickets, wires, and bungee cords.  IT was going nowhere.  The inflatables were gi-normous...10 to 15 feet high.  One yard boasted a Santa and sleigh, Santa and Ms. Claus, Santa and Elvis, Santa and with #48 Jimmie Johnson, and Santa with Jimmy Hoffa-mystery solved (a wee bit of exaggeration with Jimmy; Elvis, however, is pure fact).  Multiple interpretive Santas in one scene is completely unacceptable, representing a major Feliz Navidad faux pas.  Snowmen of various shapes and sizes, a blow up star of Bethlehem and carousel composed another genus group.  A carousel, seriously?  What does a carousel have to do with Christmas, Hanukkah, or Kwanzaa?  And how in the name of Mary and Joesph did all this transpire in an 8-hour period? 
At night, the roaring of the generators running the fans made it difficult to settle down for a long winter's nap.  The myriad of colored lights and clear ones; the mixture of big strands and small strands; some lights dancing, some sparkling, others pulsating; vintage and LED living together…plop, plop, fizz, fizz.  Trazodone take me away!  In the mornings, the icing on the gingerbread house, one might say, was the carnage.  Lifeless bodies of red and green lie scattered about the streets like a war torn Arctic circle.  I had to avert my eyes every morning in December as I left for work. 
All was not lost, however.  I decided to use  the  whole debauchery collectively as teachable moments for my 9 year old son.   As we drove through our neighborhood, I used various homes to produce my version of What Not To Let Your House Wear, Holiday Edition.  You know, how less is more; how symmetry is the golden rule; how you never mix sub genres, ie baby Jesus in a manger beside an inflatable Grinch; and how proportion plays out in every scene; and, of course, how we dress our yard like we dress our bodies-we cover our imperfections and accentuate our attributes.  Yes, when life gives you a cranberry, make a daiquiri.

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