Last night, I decided to get into the holiday spirit full-throttle. First, I went down to UNC and saw the annual show put on by the Stylistics class—this amazing course that has to do with grammar, and words, and is entirely too complicated to explain here, especially when I’m supposed to be out of the house in five minutes. Suffice to say, it was great as always. Then, there was the creative writing holiday cocktail gathering, which was lovely. When I got home, I felt all spirit-y (is that even a word?) so I hauled out my fake tree and set it up. It’s a little weird, yes, but it’s also cute and was so entirely easy: open box, shake out tree, straighten out bent boughs to make it look more “natural,” then plug in. And then, wa-la (as my husband would say, making me laugh out loud): a tree. I also hung up the little stocking lights I got across the mantle, which is just so very festive, and then pulled out a bunch of my cheap plastic candy cane ornanments and some other small ones for my tree. The whole endeavor took about ten minutes, no joke.
Then, the piece de resistance: my dancing Santa Homer. Now, normally, I do not purchase this kind of kitschy holiday merchandise. I think it comes from growing up in a family when we never over-did Christmas at all, no lights on the house, or reindeer in the yard, or whatever. We were understated, and it stuck with me. But then, a couple of years back, I was walking through JC Penney on the day of our big annual Christmas party when I saw this Santa Homer. He was with a bunch of other dancing and singing little toys, the kind you just know will make you crazy in about five seconds, and he was on big-time sale, like ten bucks or something. So I bought him. Brought him home, and stuck him on our kitchen island, where he spent the night dancing and singing. “Deck the halls with Buddy Holly!” I think is my favorite, with the Fa-la-la-la-las barked out like he’s about to die. Good times.
Last year, I forgot about Homer entirely: I think he was buried in a closet. But last night, I remembered him, and went to pull him out. But when I pushed his button, something was wrong. He sounded….broken. Garbled. He’d start out with gusto, and then trail off with a crunching, mechanical noise. Not good. I was dismayed, but I figured maybe he’d been laying on his side for two years, which could throw anyone out of whack. So I just left him out for the night, but this morning, same problem. Then my husband replaced the batteries and wa-la! He works. It’s a Christmas miracle!
(Actually, it’s just the batteries, I guess. But hey, it sounds better for the story, right?)
So now we have Homer back. The dogs are completely freaked out by him. I get my loud, crazy fa-la-las. All is right with the world. At least for right now. And you know what? I’ll take it. Happily.