Friday, November 30, 2007

No Holiday Blues For Me!

I’m sitting at the Wild Chicken Café in my little town sipping down some tea and noticing how incredibly relaxed I am. In times past, this time of year would have found me with a relentless tape running in the backgound of my mind – a perpetually modifying list of all of the things I think everyone else might want/need/enjoy for the holidays. This would propel me toward the mall in every spare moment until The List has been ticked off, which was generally Christmas Eve, as I would have inevitably forgotten someone.

About 4 years ago I quit. What happens instead is this. In the spirit of the holiday season, our families each kick in what we can comfortably afford and put it into a pot with that sum dedicated to the charity or goodwill gesture of our choice. No more presents except for the very young in the family. Everyone else will have to simply enjoy my company and my cooking. That’s it.

With the monkey off my back, I have returned to loving everything that the winter holiday season stands for: good friends, good conversation, good smells, good music and good food. Those are things worth focusing on – not my contribution to the quarterly retail outlook for Wall Street.

While I still have a loop running in my head, instead of The List it goes more like this - “Oh, the weather outside it frightful, but the fire is so delightful. As long as there’s no place to go, let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.” The song will be stuck there until well after the first of the year. Never mind that it’s sunny and in the mid-60s outside, it’s amazing how much deeper an appreciation one can have for all of the quaintness and generosity of the season once the Retail Monster has been put to bed!

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