The next installment of the series - Christmas edition....
Good thing Dave thought to buy the Sunday paper last week. He fished through the pile of newsprint that morning and found the TV guide and brought it back to the bedroom with a fresh beer. Shopping on Christmas Eve definitely had sucked, but you just can't predict beer store hours on Christmas Day. Armed with a case of neatly aligned bottles on the top shelf of the refrigerator, he wouldn't have to leave the house this Christmas.
Christmas mornings as a child were relatively good - some cool stuff usually appeared under the tree and managed to entertain him through the rest of Christmas break from school. Really couldn't ask for much more. As an adult though, Christmas lost its magic. Not even the sounds of a good Barry Manilow holiday tape could drag him into the undertow of holiday spirit. Now he had his own holiday spirits. He acquired a taste for the fine winter festival beers produced by European brewing houses and the growing number of domestic microbreweries. An assorted collection of such ales and lagers from the upscale grocery store in town and a bag of Frito corn chips and bean dip would be his Christmas gift to himself. Beats anything that a fat man in a red suit could possibly drag down his chimney.
But the bean dip would wait. The leftover quesadilla that served as breakfast was still occupying his hunger gene. He had forgotten the happy hour leftovers in his car overnight, but the chilly December cold front had preserved his Christmas meal. A shout out to Mother Nature for that gift. Finding that meal was a bigger surprise than opening a package of tube socks on Christmas morn.
One might think, "How sad. Alone on Christmas Day? Bean dip, beer and leftover Mexican food?" Stop it. It's not sad. Really… it’s not.
Remember that Dave had a fridge full of microbrewed beer while other drunks would spend their holidays drinking cheap malt liquor at somber underpass celebrations or wishing only for the strength to unscrew the cap on their latest wine acquisition. Dave celebrated with the finest hops grown in Bavaria and imported in beautiful brown and green glass bottles that sat within beautifully designed cardboard carriers. That's right, the beer company spent considerable money on an MBA to spend considerable time deciding what he would like to drink this Christmas. He raised his bottle to toast that company and thanked them for the packaging that decorated his apartment this holiday.
It's a holiday, yet many people are working way harder in their kitchens today than they do at work. At work, they read some emails, forward some dumb jokes, shuffle some papers, and try to keep their ass out of trouble. Today they wake up way too early to insure gifts have been "left" under the tree, then spend the day working a frozen turkey into a meal by turning the south wing of the house into an oversized Easy Bake oven. All while trying not to stress out and yell at Cousin Jimmy for teaching the kids how to swear in Spanish. Dave merely cracked open that bean dip and the most stress was making sure the chips didn't go flying all over the kitchen while tearing into the fresh bag of Fritos. Just like the pilgrims, buddy. Pilgrims celebrated Christmas, too, you know, but you really don’t hear about it much because the Indians weren’t there. I don’t know why they weren’t invited back, but without that tension present it wasn’t worth covering in the press.
So celebrate the holidays whatever way you choose. But remember as stress levels rise and holiday expectations turn to lingering resentments, alone for the holidays isn't as bad as it seems. Sam Adams never let him down, so just tell the elves to swing by Foremost Liquors on the way to his rooftop and he'll be just fine. Nevermind the fact that elves don’t traditionally make the trip with Santa.
Merry Christmas to all and to all, a very good night.