What the Eggnog Wrought
Maybe I can blame it on bad eggnog, but the other night I dreamed that I bumped into Dr. Seuss and Clement Clarke Moore while we were all searching for Christmas lights at OSH (they were sold out, of course). For some reason, the three of us got to kvetching about the holidays. When I awoke from my slumber, the poem that follows was scribbled on the notepad on my nightstand. Yeah, that was some funky eggnog:
Deck the (Empty Nester) Halls
’Twas the week before Christmas, when I said to my spouse
“It’s probably time to start decorating the house.”
“Ya think?” she exclaimed with a roll of her eyes
And then walked away while exhaling loud sighs.
Our neighbors had all done their homes weeks before
With lights on their shingles and wreaths on their door
Inflatable snowmen stood poised on their lawns
But passing our house produced nothing but yawns.
It’s not that I don’t want to join in the fun
And I certainly love the whole look when it’s done
But the boxes and crates and assorted gewgaws
All the lights and the garland – it gives me such pause.
I can’t climb a ladder with speed like I used to
And hanging from rooftops? Well, why would I choose to?
Our kids are all grown, it’s just me and my mate
This old empty nest is one great big blank slate.
And here’s something else that is no longer fun
Those new LED lights that are bright as the sun
They use much less power and help save the planet
But the glow they emit is as stone cold as granite.
So we scrounged and we hunted like highly trained canines
’Til we found enough strings of the old-school type C-9s
We hung them all up and we turned them all on
And I have to admit, my reluctance was gone.
Then out on the street, there arose such a clatter
I ran (okay, walked) down the driveway to see what was the matter
Our mailbox was bursting, its door off its hinges
The mailman was there with his face full of twinges
He had mountains of catalogs stashed in his pack
With a gruff, Grinchy voice he intoned, “Oh, my back!”
He was sweating profusely and starting to quiver.
It was sad the poor soul had so much to deliver
But I thanked him and wished him a world of good cheer
(Though I’m sure he would rather I gave him a beer!)
Then I went up the driveway and back to our house
To finish my chores and make happy the spouse
Once the house was aglow and my wife, she was too
Our progress was good, but we’d still lots to do.
There was fudge to be fudged and eggnog to be spicing
And cookies to bake and then painted with icing.
We trimmed up our tree with ornaments so shiny
Was it festive and cheery? Oh, you bet your hiney!
We wrapped enough presents to fill up a sleigh
Then hung up our stockings and called it a day.
We were tired and sore and I needed a nap
When there came at the window a soft tap, tap, tap!
I looked up and saw him, that Jolly Old Saint
With his snowy white beard and his costume so quaint.
He gestured at all of our trappings outside
Then flashed a “thumbs up” and got back in his ride
Ol’ Rudolph and company then put it in gear
And took to the sky that was so cold and clear
I was feeling quite good (for one who is older)
When Santa turned back and looked over his shoulder
Then I heard him exclaim, as he turned back around
Merry Christmas to all, and I’ll see you ’round town!