On the first day of Christmas I Swear it’s not too late!
Good Evening from the towers that are A Word with you Press just across the street from Friendship Square in downtown Moscow!
The First Annual Peggy Dobbs Write-of-Passage Contest is approaching a (dare I say it?) CLIMAX! Since I announced marathon posting on Thanksgiving, this story by Patty Clark is the 15th of 24 I promised to post in rapid succession. I actually found two more stories in the hamper than I thought I had, so it looks like I STILL have 11 to go after this one from Patty.
Patty is a new-comer to our site so I trust you will all make her feel welcome.
LOVE CONQUERS PAUL
By Patty Clark
It’s that most wonderful time of the year. For everything from schnitzel to chipmunk impersonations to loving the one you’re with. Assuming the ones you’re with are people you absolutely adore. I suspect everyone but grandma will get run over by a reindeer if they act like a Scrooge. It’s a season of hope, deer, and fear of miserable protagonists.
Who names their kid Scrooge? I guess he was named with reasonable acumen when all the other names were taken. But I’d definitely be asking Santa for a new identity and more desirable disposition.
Christmas is when we revel in the love by purchasing perfectly serviceable dead trees. Along with potted Poinsettias positioned in every area of the house.
Why a Poinsettia? It’s not as pretty as a daisy collection. Or an orchid with ornaments. And certainly not as functional as a cannabis plant camouflaged in tinsel.
I am beginning the whole holiday experience, hoping my days will be merry and not so up-tight. Which is why I amcurrently enjoying some love in the form of an early egg-spiked-nog while I’m thawing the Christmas turkey, since it takes weeks in advance to assure my ability to dress the bird. And hoping I can get the gizzards out without the use of a jackhammer, a power torch, and a whole pitcher of nog. Which by the way is no fun doing alone. Especially when you’re underneath a mistletoe.
Take my friend Paul who began feeling the lonely holiday blues, back in July. His stocking has been hanging the last few years by the chimney with care, in hopes Mrs. Wonderful will come make it a pair. Paul doesn’t have much family, and dating had become a maniacal ritual. Classic attire. Hair slicked back. Bouquets of flowers. Dividing women by composition and tree types, since his preference is a Douglas Fir.
Getting ready for a date was much like washing his car, making it attractive and raring to go. Yet he felt he had wandered into awkward territory when dining different women ever since his dear wife passed away.
Paul started romancing a real gem named Sara. The woman who lists Cartier at the top ofher Christmas list. She wanted five golden rings at once; I’m supposing one for each finger. He bowed out of that expensive habit and successfully bid on a date with Dierdre at a charity event. Then that came to a complete halt. He felt like the baffled buffoon learning that she took an over-excessive liking to Ellen.
By then he met Amirah. But most Muslims observe certain days of December as a time of fasting, and Paul likes giblets and gravy too much.
Along came Molly, with two Doberman’s and a deadline: the marriage proposal after three dates. When what to his wondering eyes should appear, but eyes reddened like raspberries, and a wifely volunteer. She loved her libations, and was sort of like the drunken turtle dove hovering over an old oak. She was always dreaming of a white Christmas. And when she was out of white, she settled for bottles of red. I told him, “No need to deal with Blitzen. So dash away, dash away, dash away Paul.”
I wanted to gift wrap Paul a gal in the biggest way. Surveying the grim door of romance slamming behind him, he leisurely strolled through the park right after Thanksgiving into a series of romantic gardens. There was no escaping the beauty that his senses required. There were only two reasons for not wanting to be there. Heartache and allergies. Once enclosed by plants and pines in this idyllic arrangement the soil has provided, sounds accompanied him consisting of merry music and nearby love birds. It was the holiday melodies and decorations that got to him.
The same thing happens to me at the start of September, when I know marketing manipulators spent all year in some goal- setting workshop conniving ways to take my cash earlier and earlier. It’s quite natural to want the spirit of the holidays to last forever. Only I am not really wanting to see piled bills, or pine needle remains come March…
But enough about me. I think Paul wanted to do some caroling by that point. Only his version would be “Christmas tree, oh Christmas tree, my love filled life, is history.”
Then he found her.
She eagerly greeted him as she rounded the bench where he painstakingly sat. Big green eyes stared at Paul and he was hooked. With one satisfying scratch behind the ears, he was assured of abiding devotion. She was warm, snuggly, and affectionate. Behind a cluster of mostly white fur, with a bit of black trimming her eyes and no apparent ownership tag, he took her home. He didn’t care that she couldn’t cook, do laundry, or use a commode. Who better to watch over him as he nods off to sleep each night while visions of sugarplums and doggie treats danced in his head?
It came upon that midnight clear that one certain shepherd and miracle hound brought him some cheer. Theonly problem I saw in this situation was that Paul couldn’t really seat the date of a dognext to him at any forthcoming holiday dinner table.
I swear it’s not too late to hold an over-abundance of love in one’s heart. The kind of love that makes you breathe deeply and sigh, “I’m going to be generous and give away Aunt Mabel’s eighteenth knitted sweater with penguins on it to some homeless person.”
Of course it’s logic like this that could have attracted bomb-toting aviators to Pearl Harbor. But honestly, we should all have Paul’s kind of adoring attachment at Christmastime, no matter the pedigree. And better a dog than six geese-a-laying or four calling birds. It’s a lot less poop on the lawn.