Friday, December 31, 2010

Baby New Year

Picking on Baby New Year is like shooting a guppy in a barrel. Three words have never been combined to such ridiculous effect (well, except maybe for Jar Jar Binks). A diapered baby with a pageant sash is the best we can come up for a spokesman at midnight on December 31? Baby should be snoozing in his crib, not hoovering Asti and twirling a noisemaker.

And don’t even get me started on Father Fucking Time. It’s past your bedtime, too, ding-dong. Drink some warm milk, wrap your beard around you like a wiry blanket, clap off the light, and call it a year.


Wednesday, December 29, 2010

New Year's Eve

My friends keep circling me, poking me to make a decision about New Year's Eve. I patiently, dare I say lovingly, explain that I don't do NYE. I threw in that bar towel several years ago.

What a well-meaning friend says: "Oh, we can do something low key, stay in the neighborhood and drink at a bar."

What I think:
I'd rather claw my face off. Better yet, I'd rather beat that drunk on the bar with a noise-maker until he squeals.

What I say: "Thanks but, um, no. I'm treating it like it's just another night."

What a soulful, enlightened friend suggests: "Come over to my house and we'll have a burning ceremony and set intentions for the new year."

What I think:
While that sounds magical, waving around a sage stick still marks this as a special day, which, in my date book, it's not.

What I say: "Honey, I love you but I think I'll spend the evening journaling by myself. Maybe I'll even create a vision board for 2011."

Why do I want to punch December 31 right in the Dom-soaked digits? Read my post from last year. I'm THIS close to losing an eye from a champagne cork so NYE, you win the end-of-year cage fight. I'm tapping out.


Friday, December 24, 2010


My laundry list of holiday gripes is long and storied. Santa hats, lawn inflatables, poinsettas, theme sweaters, mall parking lots, antlers and shiz on the front of gas-sucking SUVs, year-round Christmas shoppes, year-round Christmas decorations, Wal-Mart…

However, I love Christmas. I love any opportunity to give and get a gift. I love bubble lights on a fresh tree and the looks of sugared-up delight on the faces of kids in pajamas with feet. I love Midnight Mass. I love the spirit of love and generosity that wells up within me when I’m surrounded by my closest friends during magical December dinner parties. I love the free-flowing booze that comes with any holiday party worth its salted rims. I love hot roast beast and cold rum cake.

So suck on it, you bah humbuggin’ Scrooges. You get back what you put out, so if you’re navigating the holidays with a stone-cold heart, you’re going to get a lump of coal in your stocking and a lump on your face from the Ghost of Christmas Present, which is what I’m calling my mittened right fist.

God bless us all, everyone.


Saturday, December 18, 2010

And the winner is…Sevara!

With an embarrassment of riches, the likes of which have not been seen since Gywneth Paltrow’s guest spot on Glee, your entries made it almost impossible to pick a winner in the TIWTPITF festival of frights. From limp lawn inflatables and parking lot asswipes to forced office gift-giving, the holidays do indeed offer up a host of new things that deserve to be punched until they beg for fruitcake. Oh, I’ve got a gift for all these things and it’s called my left fist. And I have a gift for Sevara, who gets a copy of Beyond the Family Tree for her short list of TIWTPITF. Her first point made me laugh out loud, no small feat during December. Sevara, shoot me an e-mail here with your address and I’ll send out your copy in short order, hopefully in time to use it during your family gathering.

Thanks again everyone; your snark keeps me warm on cold nights.

Sevara said…

  1. Yearly family card. Yes, I really wanted to know that your Johnny is making $100,000 a month, and that daughter Jenny just gave birth to the most beautiful baby girl. First of, fuck off. Don't tell me about your perfect family, because we all know that Johnny is an asshole, your family is in debt because you guys are keeping up with the Joneses, and your beautiful, smart, "cough" slut "cough" Jenny got knocked up by some idiot, who was obligated to marry her. Thanks for that fake pose you sent me and Merry Christmas to the Assholes.
  2. Musux. It's the most annoying time of the year! I hate Rudolf, Santa, chestnuts, and all of the other X-mas music. And they start it in-mid October!
  3. Gifts. Okay, I love giving gifts to people I love and enjoy spending time with, like, my family and friends. But other "friends" that believe they are the best people out there, and we are all are "so close". NOT! That is why I never return your calls, emails, texts—because I don't want to talk to you. And I don't want to get you a gift, either. I don't want to spend my money on you. I'd rather burn ten bucks in my fireplace than buy you shit from the dollar store.
Honorable mentions

Marissa said...

SECRET SANTA at work. I'm forced to spend forty hours of my life with people that, quite frankly, are not my cup of tea. The only reason I grace them with my presence is because some faceless dude is PAYING me to do so. That being said, why the hell would I go out of my way to do something special for the woman who is the very bane of my existence? Or the guy who not so quietly brags about his sexual conquests after a night of binge drinking? HUH? Why would I spend the money I'm being paid to share air space with these goons on gifts for them when I have a perfectly good box of used cat litter ready and available? Secret Santas in the workplace need a firm blow to the face with a yule log.

Shieldmaiden96 said...
Christmas letters (in cute fonts, on theme-appropriate laser printer paper) tucked in cards. We have one friend who writes a seven-paragraph Christmas letter every year. It's mostly to make sure we all know how fabulous, unusually advanced, and super-duper creative each and every one of his kids has become, and just how fan-diddly-tastic life is in their household. I hate his kids and I've never even met them.

KeriCan said...
Obligatory Christmas cards. Seriously, if you think your relationship with my family is close enough to warrant buying a card, locating our address after the umpteenth move, forking over for stamps, and hauling your ass to the post office, the least you could do is write a little message in the card. Just signing your name, or much worse, stamping your name, only makes me want to smack you the next time I see you. I don't give a crap about the cute illustration you picked out for this year; I'd rather get a little note, even typed if you must, about your life. Better yet, give up that glittery mess of a card and just call so we can have a meaningful conversation.


Saturday, December 11, 2010

Post your own holiday PITF and win!

As my gift to you, my beloved malcontents, I'll be giving away a signed copy of my new book, Beyond the Family Tree: A 21st-Century Guide to Exploring Your Roots and Creating Connections (which, believe you me, will come in handy around the dinner table). To win this decidedly un-TIWTPITF prize, simply draft a post of the thing that drives you batshit crazy around the holidays. Be it fruitcake, wreaths attached to car grilles, shoppers wearing santa hats or Quacker Factory holiday sweaters, let it rip. Post your rant in the comments section of this post. I'll pick a winner next week! Merry effin' Christmas!

Christmas muzak

Grandma may have gotten run over by a reindeer, but I want to run the song over with a 3-ton truck. And don’t even get me started about that fucking drummer boy kid. “Pa rum pum pum pum”, really? Did an 18-month-old write this song?

Let’s face it: most Christmas songs blow dead reindeer. And the ones that are tolerable—preferably sung by Bing Crosby or Elvis—are so overplayed that I want to hang myself with my Christmas lights Hark, the herald angels suck.

Silent night? If only.


Monday, December 6, 2010

The holidays?

I don't need to tell you: The holidays offer all sorts of new opportunities to be monumentally annoyed. As wondrous as they can be, they can also fuckin' suck. Fellow shoppers, drunk relatives, escalating credit card bills, shipping charges, broken heirloom ornaments, pine needles on your carpet…

So, in the spirit of the season, I'm offering some ways to navigate the holidays without killing someone with a fruitcake. Check out my other blog, word., for ideas for gifts and gathering in a way that won't break the bank or your spirit. And if you need any no-brainer gifts, look no further than one of my humorous, heartfelt, or how-to books.

And if you need a laugh, a few classics:

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Lactose intolerants in denial

This anything-but-cheesey post comes from my brilliant and hilarious friend Karrie Kohlhaas (she's the force behind ThoughShot Consulting, in case you need any small-business consulting). I love it almost as much as I love cheese. Urp.

Your dairy air is dangerous. I know, you loooove ice cream and cottage cheese, but lactose transforms your insides into a Dr. Seussian smell factory. It's time to get real about your digestion, honey. Can't you feel the pressure against your abdominal wall as gasses mushroom and multiply within the twisting tubes of your inner world?

Don't you wonder why people steer clear of you?

Here's a clue: It's awkward to feel compelled to casually cover one's nose and mouth with the top of one's shirt when sharing a seat on the bus or standing behind you in line at the grocery store. This is not a personal health issue; you are an environmental hazard. Enzymes: get some, before the EPA classifies you as a SuperFund Project.


Thursday, December 2, 2010

Books as décor

"The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn, the more places you'll go." Dr. Seuss

You are what you read.

At least that’s what I hoped, when I was rocking Dr. Seuss as a five-year-old or Jane Austen as a 30-something lady.

But some folks don’t care what they read. They use books as props, buy or rent them by the foot from various companies, who will select them by color, style, or subject for you. I’ve even seen a company that sells you blocks of books that have been glued together, apparently to make it easier to move when dusting. And heck, they’ll always be lined up perfectly.

I just threw up a little in my mind.

My bookshelves offer a snapshot into my history, my interests, my (now vomit-covered) brain. They reflect my intellectual DNA (yes, even the Betty & Veronica collection) and it’s hard to imagine viewing my books only as squares and rectangles of color to accent my home. I’ve even seen books arranged spine IN, to create a swath of white along the shelves. I was confused. How are you supposed to figure out what book to read? Oh, right. They aren’t there to be read. They’re there for me to knock some Sense and Sensibility into your head.