It’s beginning to look a lot like every other day of the year

Someone mentioned the other day that there are only “X” days left till Christmas, and that number was in the single-digits, and a part of me went, “When the hell did it become Christmas?”

(I really need to stop using “hell” and “damn” in sentences that have to do with church, Christmas, God or Jesus.)

It doesn’t feel like Christmas. Last year after my grandfather died on Thanksgiving, it sure as hell wasn’t Christmas. (There I go again.)

This year, I put up my artificial spiral tree in a fit. I was angry and needed to take out some aggression. I took the tree out of its box for the first time in five years (I’ve moved three times without ever opening that damn box) and fluffed all the branches in the space of an hour.

That was three weeks ago. And do you THINK I’ve managed to stick a strand of lights (or four) or an ornament on it? Nope. Not a one.

It’s been a busy season, but not the type with shopping and hustling and bustling. I gave up on writing Christmas cards four years ago. Don’t get me wrong — I BUY cards every year; I just never get around to saying hello to people because I never have stamps and, quite frankly, we’re all transient. Everybody moves a lot.

I struggled a couple of years ago with sending a card to friends who have a daughter with a terminal illness. Even today, I presume she might be gone but that kid had a way of hanging in there. I hope she’s still with us, but you can’t write a card to R and J “and family” if you don’t know what has happened. But you can’t leave off the “and family” or else other people would think you rude. So, fuck it — too much thought is required for writing cards.

Last year I sent some of my friends a text message to wish them a Merry Christmas, and we learned that I call people so infrequently, most of them didn’t know who the hell I was and they, in fact, texted me back to either ask who the hell I was OR they called me by someone else’s name that they know in my area code because it couldn’t POSSIBLY be me.

There was only one good Christmas in my world, two years ago. My mom and grandfather had just moved into a cute little house; I was doing well and went trucking up to Pittsburgh bearing better gifts than we’ve been able to give. And that was it. That was the first and only real Christmas in a real house with a real dining room table and a real reason to look forward to getting up on Christmas day.

I’m not saying the holiday is about gifts. My expenses have gone up, and gifts are the last thing on my mind. I did go out looking for a nativity set, though — I figured that since I’m actually not running screaming from this going-to-church thing, maybe I’d approach the holiday differently this year. I haven’t found a nativity set I like — I figure the right one will find me. Hopefully at 75% off on an after-Christmas deal!

D.C. is bizarre and it contributes to the lack of Christmasy feelings. I drove down to see the National Christmas Tree but you can’t see it from a car and the closest parking spot was in, oh, Rosslyn. And it was raining. So yeah, that didn’t go as planned.

I live in apartment/condo hell. Meaning, nobody has houses around here. There are some townhouses, sure, but that’s about it. You don’t see people decorating around here. I attribute it to the lack of “real” houses (i.e., no trees/hedges) and the fact that you have about 40 billion belief systems represented here. Other than the occasional wreath on a door or a lighted tree in a window, the only way you’ll see neighborhoods decorated is if you watch the holiday specials on HGTV.

I don’t know. It seems like last year I had a sad little Christmas, and this year it’s sort of an indifferent one. My best friend’s grandma died this week, so she’s having that same shroud over her that I carried last year. But at least she can deal with her grief and go about her life. I’m glad that one of us can, anyway.

And, seriously, Dan Fogelberg died. Talk about the ultimate kick in the ass during the holiday season. He wrote the only “(Same Old) Auld Lang Syne” that anyone knows the lyrics to. *sigh*

I can’t wait for 2008. This year has GOT to go. Most people are counting down the days till Christmas — I’m counting down till the day after New Year’s. I have an offer to go out New Year’s Eve and would love to take advantage of it, but there’s a “but” in there somewhere. Oh well. I guess anywhere that I will be drinking (preferably A LOT), it’ll be a good holiday. 🙂

2 Responses to It’s beginning to look a lot like every other day of the year

  1. Pisco Sours :

    Well, should your New Years Eve fall through, I have an invitation for you. It involves DRUNK! NAKED! COED! HOT TUBBING!

  2. Old Friend :

    DRUNK! NAKED! COED! HOT TUBBING! ? Sister Mary Francis!!! Now there is an invitation!! And right up your ally…LOL So to speak…