This post originally ran on December 22, 2014. I think it still might give you a smile today.
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This list is inspired by the holiday season and is a result of watching the behavior of folks as we get nearer to the final day. As with all my lists, there is not much redeeming value here but are designed to (maybe) get a smile. Also, some of these items may seem contrary to the spirit of the season, but I can assure you they are.
Top Ten Things Not to do During the Holiday Season.
10 During the holidays, do not invite strangers to your home even if the spirit moves you. If you do, at best, you may have an awkward moment or two. At worst, you might just wonder what happened to the house full of furniture which was there when you went off to church. (You wanted to redecorate anyway, right?)
9 During the holidays, do not accidentally drop more money than you intended into the Salvation Army kettle. If you do, at best, you will have given to a worthy cause. At worst, you will have to explain to the family about the lack of presents due to your generosity somewhere else. (Yeah, they will understand.)
8 During the holidays, do not think you have to buy everyone you know a gift. If you do, at best, you will undoubtedly earn the cheerful giver award. At worst, you may create an identity crisis with those who did not buy a gift for you, causing them to rush out and get you something, or even worse, re-gift the gift you gave them last year. (You thought that tie looked familiar)
7 During the holidays, always remind yourself that self-medication is not a wise thing during times of stress. If you don’t, at best, you will get off easy with a nip of egg nog. At worst, you will find yourself saying some of the dumbest things to those you barely know and what you think are the most brilliant things to those who no longer call you friends. ( You learned to never mention hair color under any circumstances)
6 During the holidays, do not put off your shopping to ‘get into the season.” If you do, At best, you may have to pay more for items that are in short supply. At worst, all the gifts you were going to buy are no longer in stock, so you will have to make last-minute substitutions that will be second-rate and not at all what anyone can remotely appreciate. (Gas station beef jerky, for example)
5 During the holidays, do not touch anything outside your home. If you do, at best, you will come down with a cold from a germ left on that innocent door handle. At worst, you will be quarantined by the CDC because whatever you picked up is not currently identified and is assumed to result from a terrorist attack. The upside here is the CDC has a lovely assortment of Christmas carol CDs that they are happy to play repeatedly. (Never knew Santa Claus is Coming to Town was recorded by 250 artists, did you?)
4 During the holidays, do not think you can pick up that holiday turkey on your way home on Christmas eve. If you do, at best only the twenty-five pounders will be available. At worst, the only thing left in the meat department is a package of Hog Maw leftover either from Thanksgiving or the butcher’s hunting trip. (You’ll never convince the family that hog maw and beans tastes like turkey.)
3 During the holidays, do not think you need to have an old-fashioned Christmas by subjecting your neighbors to your family’s off-key carols. If you do, at best, you will get polite smiles and some hot chocolate. At worst, you and the family will need to run for your lives as the neighbor yells, “Don’t worry. Bruno already ate.” (Man, that dog is big.)
2 During the holidays, do not try to attend every event. If you do, at best, you will be sleep-deprived and will have lost the spirit of the season. At worst, you will need to consume copious amounts of caffeine, which will lead to an unnerving appearance that might cause holiday revelers to actually believe the story of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.” (Or even worse, think the Christmas tale of the Zombie is real.)
1 During the holidays, do not despair over small things that you forgot. If you do, at best, things will seem worse as a result. At worst, your family will undoubtedly be forced to look forward to the coming of spring when the state promises to review your case again. (A gas station hold-up is never the answer.)