Archive for the ‘Holidays’ Category

blockbuster

I believe I’m going through a transformative phase. Not anything as remarkable as becoming the best me or whatever a self-help book teaches you. No, my transformation has been more of the back in my day variety. With a touch of get off of my lawn.

Prostetlizing long forgotten scenarios from the past has quickly become a favorite pastime. And each scenario should inevitably blow youngsters minds when I tell it to them. Note: It doesn’t

Even so, they’re immensely satisfying to tell. My scratch to youth’s itch.

I’ve become the dad you say hi to, and then quickly avoid at your friend’s house. The dad who ends up driving you somewhere. And then you’re trapped, as I begin regaling you with tales from long ago. Perhaps you cringe. Perhaps you curse at your friend under your breath. All the while, you scan the world outside for a soft spot to land. Because I will continue talking. And you will inevitably throw open the door and jump from the car. Because I won’t stop.

You see, I need to explain things to you. Because you’re a kid. And I know everything, because I’m a dad. I even have my dad degree. Note: It involved having sex with a lady. Note 2: That’s how babies are made.

And that brings us to Blockbuster video. My version of I walked ten miles to school.

It began with my kids complaining. Also, this is where all parental-rants are born.

They huffed and mumbled in unison about nothing good being on Netflix. I ignored it at first. Then one of them said “Netflix is the worst! There’s never anything on!”

They didn’t realize it then, but a line had been drawn in the sand. I wasn’t about to let any offspring of mine whine in such a manner. And besmirching the good name of Netflix in the process? Unacceptable.

Like in a comic book movie, right before the superhero does something real cool, I took a breath, arched my eyebrow, and nodded to the lady in the room. My wiiiife. Note: That’s meant to be read in a Borat voice.

And then I began. It went something like this:

ME: This is nothing. When I was your age, I would go to blockbuster video! You know of blockbuster video?

MY KIDS: No.

ME: That’s right! You don’t. I would go there, and there would be one video I wanted to rent. ONE. And I would scurry over to it on the shelf, but all of the copies were GONE. Just an empty dvd cover. And you know what happened then? Huh?! I didn’t get to watch it. That’s what. I had to come back another day. And go through it all again. I had to work for my entertainment, damn it!

It was glorious. I had put them in their place. I was a chef. And food for thought was my specialty. But they were gone. Slipped out during the apex of my grand rant.

They say that youth is wasted on the young. Well it wouldn’t be if they listened to what I had to say.

Oh, side note, Happy New Year, errbody!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s just terrible. Sure, some might say it’s a mixed bag, but those are most likely the same, sadistic folks that I see jogging around the neighborhood when it’s under five degrees.

It makes sense that these people enjoy our current, frozen hellscape. They’ve been secretly trying to kill themselves every winter, under the guise of exercise.

They do this, so you can feel twice as bad.  First, for how sloth-like indoor life has made you. And second, for the fact that the cold won’t kill them. Yet it would you.

This same sort of deception is at play when someone says “Eh, it’s not so bad.” Or the most obnoxious of all: “It could be worse.”

Yeah, it could be worse. We could be naked, fighting off wolves in Alaska. But I probably wouldn’t have time to update this readerless blog, if that were the case.

And you know what else?

It could also be better, a lot better. We could be cuddling koala bears, while snapping pics of tropical drinks, on a beach somewhere in Honolulu (If that’s even a real place).

That said, I guess it’s not all doom and gloom. After all, December does bring with it the holiday season. And yes, there’s a lot to be grateful for. And the different holidays and their rich traditions make life that much more special. Yadda yadda yadda.

But seriously, who are we fucking kidding? It’s 10 degrees below zero, right now . And I’m willing to bet cold, hard cash, that almost all winter traditions were invented for the sole purpose of stopping us from walking off into the frozen night. Even something as small as a catchy jingle can stop one from giving in to death’s warm embrace.

So you see, If cavemen had Christmas ornaments, we’d all be a lot hairier. That’s just plain science.

Unfortunately, when it’s this kind of cold outside, even heartwarming holiday cheer can mutate into something a bit more ominous.

Take classic Christmas carols like Deck the Halls, White Christmas, or Silent Night. If you’re cold enough (And if you live in Chicago, you are), you begin to decode what these songs are actually about.

Some might point to cabin fever, but the sort of chill I’m talking about is beyond psychological symptoms. And it’s beneficial in one way, and one way only. Like Neo in the Matrix, you begin to see things for what they are.

Fa la la la la is the sound teeth make during their final death rattle. It’s obvious that the poor bastard who wrote this tune, never could get that sound out of his head. Betchya didn’t know that.

Silent night, holy night was evidently written by someone suffering from hypothermia, and preparing to meet his maker. You can’t get much holier than that.

And White Christmas? Well, Bing Crosby might as well have been part of the alt-right. The jury’s still out on him. *Note: Just kidding, Bing. That was a low blow.

“But, what about fun traditions like building gingerbread houses?” You ask.

I agree, it’s a wonderful way to spend the day. Architecture meets sweet delights. It’s the sort of combination that would’ve made Frank Lloyd Wright shed a tear and loosen his belt a notch.

Still, it was an invention most likely born out of necessity. Cabin fever and dwindling food reserves, forced folks to get creative and combine their resources. After all, there’s only so many times one can read Grimm’s Fairy Tales. Yes, I’m assuming Gingerbread houses are an old German thing (no time to google, I’m on a roll).

I suspect I’m starting to sound a bit unhinged. So I won’t even get into the issues I have while drinking and driving (under the legal limit, of course) during the winter months. That would probably be bad form.

Seriously though, even with the salt, it’s like a slip-n-slide out there. And it’s even worse if you’re seeing double (or so I’ve been told).

See? This is what the winter does. It sends you on chattering tangents. Anything to keep your core temperature up.

Well, I’ll stop preaching to the choir, now. We’re all in this together. And if their is a deity in charge of the changing seasons and groundhog shadows, then I hope he or she is a merciful bastard, but I suspect this is not the case.

Also, if you’re from a tropical climate and reading this, you should thank that same cruel deity (who is undoubtedly in charge of the geographical lottery, as well). And know this, you’ll probably be reincarnated in Aleppo. Fair is fair.

A friend of mine, who will remain nameless for this blog (eh, let’s call him Ricardo. I always liked that name). Ricardo’s family started a holiday tradition of their own. His family celebrates Christmas in July. Because, and I’m speculating here, it’s too damn cold to celebrate anything in December.

And they do so with a White Elephant party, which on an unrelated note, I recently learned does not involve car keys, a hat, and condoms (boy, was that an embarrassing night).

Anyhow, Christmas in July seems like a tradition I could get behind. After all, snow is great for about one day. After that, it’s all busted shovels and thrown-out backs.

I guess June or August could also work. But a counterpoint to this would be that those months are already great, and without the holidays, December is undoubtedly the worst month of the year… which is saying a lot.

Jesus, this blog is all over the place. And I’m not sure how I feel about any of it. Except for the part about hating winter. I feel quite strongly about that.

I guess what I’m trying to say, in a very roundabout way, is we’re lucky to have the holidays. Because without em, we’d be a bunch of miserable assholes.

Happy Holidays to you and yours.