Thursday, December 01, 2005

Christmas Plans

I was kind of wondering, of the readers out there across the US and the rest of the world, how your holiday season would be spent.

Mine typically starts on Dec 23, when I start my Christmas shopping. I depart my house alone at 7:30 in the morning, take a quick swing through Walmart to get the little “quantity” gifts for my wife from the kids and then have lady working the jewelry store pick out something really nice from me. I then go the bar at about 11:00, pound down a burger and a couple of beers (my pre-holiday training run) and then go fishing hoping to nail a couple of early steelhead in the river. Afterwards, I make my way back to the bar for a few more (the stale smoke and beer smell covers up the reek of fish very well) so that I can return at 7pm and complain about my hectic shopping day and scold her for being so hard to shop for.

Christmas Eve starts with a jaunt to my sister’s house in the morning and a multitude of Jello shots done with my brother-in-law until we break out the holiday tequila at lunch time. We then go to my mother-in-laws to open gifts with the kids before going to my wife’s uncle’s house. There, we feast extravagantly and do our best to consume every bit of liquor we can find to take the edge off going to church at eleven o’clock at night. At church, we slur our way through several traditional Christmas carols and try to keep from snoring as the preacher gives a lengthy sermon about the true meaning of Christmas. At quiet points during the service, we try to find one of the kids in our group that is brave enough to pull Uncle Norman’s finger. After church, I pass out in the van while my wife drives us home.

Christmas Day begins with the kids getting me up before my hangover went away to open their loot. After going after the boxes beneath the tree like a precocious pack of present piranhas, we load them up to my father-in-law’s house for more junk. Thanks to a recovering alcoholic on that side of the family, this trip is dry which fine enough considering it affords me a great opportunity to catch up on some sleep. I generally pass out on the couch before dinner is over. I usually wake up in time to have one quick beer with my father-in-law before going to my brother’s house to continue drinking in earnest.

The rest of my week off is spent putting together toys that will be played with for all of twenty minutes before being completely forsaken and discarded in favor of the boxes they came in.

In addition to seeing how everyone is spending their holidays, I was kind of wondering who is still reading this thing in spite of my tragic lack of posting of late. Sound off if you’re there!


Anonymous Fade_to_Blah said...

Im still reading it, and I think you officially have a drinking problem :)

2:01 PM  
Blogger JEP said...

Blah, I wish I had time to nurture my habit with the intensity to make my drinking problem official but alas, between work and kids, the reality is I can only find time to drink about twice a month. No fear though, I make for lost time in those two days.

Tomorrow though, is one of the best parties of my social calander. If things hold true to history, I should have a good post on Sunday ready for you guys!

9:10 PM  
Anonymous Grab'em said...

I'm still here! Hoping to once again be sucked in by a 45 min read of one of your masterpieces. I know you won't let me down.

11:29 PM  
Blogger JEP said...

Yeah, one of these days I'll get inspired back into an epic. The possibilities for tonight are good as a matter of fact!

5:39 AM  
Anonymous LoB said...

I'm here and reading. My holiday season starts early, around the 12th when my family begins to converge to my city to celebrate both my sisters' birthdays on the 15th and 20th. From that point on it's family time. I get to talk to the relatives that live the farthest from me and it's usually a good time. I meet with my closest friends, usually have plenty of fun. Christmas Eve is when almost all of my family gathers up at my house for our big Christmas feast. Plenty of homecooked food. We usually have lamb and codfish (there are plenty of portuguese cod recipes, some of them extremely enjoyable) and all of the Christmas cakes and all those sugar filled, sugar coated food items of sugary death that you just can't stop eating. Then on Christmas Day, most of the family gets together again and we open all of the presents. After that there's usually a time period where we all sit in the living room discussing any topic from international politics to a football (soccer for you united statesians) game the week before. Then we all get together again in New Year's Eve and we have the big countdown at the end of which we all drink the mandatory champagne. Thinking about it like this makes me appreciate all these little yearly routines.
Well, this comment's long enough as it is. Looking forward to whatever entertaining events and exhilarating epic writing may come from the party you talked about.

3:39 PM  
Blogger JEP said...

Christmas in Portugal sounds eeriliy familier to Christmas in the US, LoB. Except for the Christmas Cod cuisine. I'm sure it tastes great but I'll have to take your word for it. My stint in Japan kind of spoiled me as far as being able to handle the concept of fish as food.

Which is kind of odd for a person who prowls any local river with a fly rod every chance he gets.

7:46 PM  

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