Living Retired — ‘Happy ‘How Did We Survive?’ New Year!’
Living Retired – “Happy ‘How Did We Survive?’ New Year!”
On New Years Eve Jan and I didn’t raise a glass of champagne to welcome the new year. Instead, we toasted ‘GOOD RIDDANCE to 2021!’
It is still early in 2022, but we are, well, lets just say, hobbling around the house.
No, it has nothing to do with drinking too much single malt scotch over the holidays. Nor can I blame it on going on two years of ‘Covid Couple Confinement’: Jan baking sourdough bread ad nauseam, and me frantically waving a dish towel at the smoke alarm!
The reason we are entering 2022 in such sad shape is, well, lets call it what it is: Jan and I spent the entire month of December doing every friggin’ Christmas tradition known to mankind! We are exhausted!
It began with the tradition of putting ‘Elf On The Shelf’ on a different shelf every night in December. Every morning Jan asked, “Gary, which shelf did you place Elf last night?”
“Jan, I haven’t got a clue where I put Elf. I cannot remember where I left my glasses, my Covid facemask, my iPhone, my iPad, my key fob, MY EVERYTHING!”
And then there is the ‘Putting Up A Real Christmas Tree To Fall Down’ tradition – aka: ‘The Argument To End All Arguments.’ Long ago we stopped hauling a live tree with a crooked trunk and a bare spot into the house. Instead, we have a lifelike artificial tree with a crooked trunk and bare spot. My job is to drag it up from basement to the family room – and scratch the paint on every wall. Jan gets to decorate the tree – and touch up the paint, muttering, “I don’t know why I put up with this!”
There is also the ‘Men Carving The Christmas Turkey’ tradition – aka: ‘Dear, Don’t Use Those Words In Front of The Grandchildren.’ Last week I walked around the house wearing Jan’s Christmas apron wrapped around my arm – it was a quick fix tourniquet! It started when I carved our Christmas turkey. Okay, it really started when I drank too much scotch BEFORE I decimated the damn bird – and me! – with the electric knife! When I brought the platter to the dining room table Jan shrieked, “Gary, you obliterated a beautifully roasted Butterball turkey into 15 pounds of mush!”
“Well, Jan if it helps – the white mush is on the left, the dark mush is on the right.”
Speaking of Jan, she spent much of December at the kitchen table practicing the Christmas tradition women follow: sticking scraps of felt on pinecones with a glue gun. The burns to her body are beginning to heal. Just saying.
What is left now is to clean up…
To begin with we need to store our ‘Olde Fashion Christmas’ display that is on the fireplace mantle: the lead-free, fire-retardant, imitation Ivy with natural forest scent. But first I need to find my slippers because I don’t want to jab my bare feet with the couple dozen straight pins when I tried on the new dress shirt Jan bought me.
“Gary, you cannot even think of entering the family room after what happened when you opened the gift in the cardboard box that was stuffed with a truckload of white foam chips!”
I am telling you it was like a scud missile exploded in our family room! White foam chips are still clinging to the walls, carpets, EVERYWHERE! Trying to pick them up is more difficult than getting your telephone number removed from a telemarketers list.
Stumbling into the new year also means beginning a diet, right? For me I am still working on losing the final 15 pounds from last years diet to lose 10 pounds! But this year I refuse to listen to the advice of nutritionists – people who go to university for 4 years to learn to tell people to eat carrot sticks! Just saying.
Happy New Year! I hope you find 2022 to be peaceful and calm – after you find your wallet.