Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Cheer Up, It's Christmas

The Eastpointer


By Richard E. Noble

There are only two kinds of people in the world - those that love Christmas and those that hate Christmas. I have always been a born and bred, true blue, Christmas hater. And I have very good, rational justification for my adherence to such an attitude. But as fate will have it and just to break my chops and bust my bubble, the all-knowing messengers from the above; the designers of the expanding universe; that impossible infinite brain who controls all the planets - sent me a bride whose birthday just happens to fall on ... December 25th.
What do you think of that? You’ve heard of the odd couple? How about a situation comedy with Ebenezer Scrooge and Santa Claus living in the same apartment?
It happens every year at about this time. My mind starts to search the dark and dingy corners of my bleak, unhappy childhood for all those tales of misery and neglect that linger like scar tissue on my inner personality and my wife starts bouncing around like a little elf, putting up Christmas lights, doing red and green needlepoint things, and playing Dean Martin’s “I’ll be home for Christmas” around September. That’s when I dig out my Edgar Allen Poe, and start making my annual inquires to the suicide hot line number to see if they are taking on any extra help.
I’ve always figured that I have the perfect attitude to talk to potential suicide candidates. First, I would listen to their terribly depressing story, and then, I’d say; “Well, sounds to me that you have a perfectly good reason for committing suicide BUT ... let me ask you this. If God could do all of this to you, what makes you think that He is going to lighten up if you commit suicide? You must realize that you are a person who is on God’s pooh-pooh list - if you know what I mean. Did you ever figure that it ain’t gonna get no better than this, and that maybe being a hopeless alcoholic is going to be the high point of your eternity? He put you here and did this to you – do you really want to find out what He has planned next?
To tell you the truth, for the first five years or so of our marriage, just looking at my wife’s bubbling smile and rosy cheeks at this time of the year, gave me chronic morning sickness. In fact, this year, I’ve sent for my own home pregnancy test kit. Boy, that’s all that I need.
But enough of this fun and games, I’ve sat down here today to make all of you cry - after all, this is Christmas. But first, I have to get you all in the mood.
Tell me, do you have any retarded children? Anybody in your immediate family have an incurable disease? Did you ever back up out of the drive, over one of your own children? Come on, THINK! You couldn’t have lived through all of these Christmases without being miserable at least once in your life. Didn’t you ever say, “So what if our little Nancy got bit by a strange dog. How does anybody really know if that was actual saliva foaming around its mouth? And besides, this tetanus shot business is just another plot by Doctors to make themselves a bunch of extra bucks.”
So, are you getting into a crying mood yet? No? Then let’s think - cancers? terminal brain tumor? unemployment? bankruptcy? stock market crash? hunger? pestilence? poverty? starvation? nuclear fallout? war? Global warming? experimental research on the Easter Bunny? That’s not a lump, Honey, it is just a little fat - too many kielbasa sandwiches, more than likely.
But can you believe this! Do you see what’s happening? That’s right - my wife is starting to rub off on me. She is beginning to win the battle. I sat down here today to write something depressing. I hoped to make everyone cry, or, at least, get sick to their stomachs and puke. But, instead, all that I can come up with is this light hearted dribble about disease and suicide. I’ll tell you; this makes me want to barf! I’m disgusted with myself. I might just as well go write a Christmas list, or hang some silver tinsel.
I’d really like to tell all of you little kids out there that Santa Claus is really dead. But, I have recently read that he was a secret witness for the FBI. Seems that he was involved in some political gift-giving bribery scam and the FBI has issued him a new identity. He is presently living under an assumed name in some remote sheep herding village in northern Argentina. Don’t expect him this year, boys and girls.
So, you see, nothing is working out for me today. I really don’t think that I could depress anyone. Everything that I write about is positive. I think that I will just scrap this whole article, and ask my wife to write something cheery about how it feels to be sixty. I mean, she is the one who was born on December 25th, not me. Oh well, happy birthday, honey.
So, tell me, has anyone in your family ever lived long enough to collect Social Security? And I mean lived! Being tied to a chair for fifteen years, back in the laundry room of some Jamaican nursing home in Miami because you abused your refrigerator privileges, doesn’t count.
Well, the heck with this – everything that I think of sounds just too Rudolph-like. I guess that I am just going to resign myself to directing my feet to the sunny side of the street and decking the halls with bombs of holly – I mean balls ... that’s balls … I mean boughs of holly.
So okay, have a Merry Christmas.

Richard E. Noble has been a resident of Eastpoint for around thirty years now. He has authored two books: “A Summer with Charlie” which is currently listed on and “Hobo-ing America” which should be listed on Amazon in the not too distant future. Most recently he completed his first novel “Honor Thy Father and Thy Mother” which will be published soon.