Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Dick The Halls

I went to a craft store last week to look around and see if they had any Halloween decorations left. It is, of course, only October, but in perfect “stuff the holidays down your throat” fashion, the Christmas shit was already out and taking over the store. There was a woman in the ribbon aisle trying to pick out the perfect Christmas ribbon with her two annoyed kids in tow. They had absolutely no interest in their mother’s dilemma and I don’t blame them. She was really in turmoil about what “theme” their tree was going to be this year. All I could do was think back on how we prepared for and celebrated Christmas in my house when I was their age. You were more likely to hear “Rob, put your dick back in your pants,” before you would have ever heard a discussion on the “theme’ of our Christmas decorations. Relax; my family is not a bunch of perverts! I will explain that comment a little later. So as we're forced to prepare for Christmas before we've even celebrated Halloween and Thanksgiving, here are a few snippets from my own childhood.

My dad loves Christmas! He just doesn’t love putting the tree up, hanging lights outside, wrapping presents, or really anything else that involved creating the Christmas spirit; but I promise you he loves it! Growing up, he would much rather have watched from his lazy-boy while the TV was on, directing us from a far. Like so many other families, the day after Thanksgiving was the day we got the green light to throw up the tree, put the stockings up, and hang lights outside. We always had an artificial tree, mainly because chopping down a tree, watering it, and picking up the dead needles involved a lot of effort. Keep in mind that we were an overweight family and that was definitely not going to happen in my house. We also didn’t normally hang lights outside; again, because that involved exerting energy and in the typical households, adult supervision. If you know anything about me, you already know “typical” is not a way I describe my family. So of course my dad thought it was no big deal for 11 and 12 year old kids to proceed with hanging lights outside. With stapler gun and feet upon feet of mismatched lights my brother and I ventured out determined to string the lights across every bush, tree, and anything else that a light could be stapled to. We plugged them in to make sure they worked. We laid them out along the wooden landscape edging and began to staple them in place. On one occasion, Christmas spirit wasn’t the only thing coursing through my brother's body; he stapled right through the live wire (it was still plugged in of course) and was filled with volts of electricity. The only adult response we got to being electrocuted on the front porch was my father yelling, “what in the shit are you doing!?”

Christmas morning was the big reveal; my step-mother loved video-taping the entire event and my father loved ruining the family tapes with his inappropriate commentary. She so very much wanted those Norman Rockwell holiday moments, but unfortunately she rarely got them. On Christmas Eve we got to open one present and they were always pajamas; fucking, matching pajamas that we had to put on and wear to bed so we all looked camera-ready for the morning. We had to wear them even if they fit a little tight, and because we were fat asses, they almost always were too tight.Keep in mind that most male pajama pants have a slit in the front that becomes increasingly open as the pants get tighter. In the morning we would fix our hair and walk down the hall where dad would be waiting ready to capture those amazing family moments on video. Unfortunately for my step-mother, the video camera captured this phenomenon and one particularly interesting bit of commentary from my father to my brother. My brother’s pajama bottoms happened to open slightly in the front as he sat down to open his presents. Neither he, nor anyone else noticed…except my dad. In typical dad fashion, he shouted (while the camera was rolling) “Rob, put your dick back in your pants!”