Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

My Modest Proposal

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

My Modest Proposal

Article excerpt

Happy New Year.

Oh, there's no day like New Year's Day.

You rise late and feel around for your head. It is that large swollen object attached to your neck.

Speaking of swollen, someone seems to have pumped your gut full of air. It wobbles like a half-filled water bed.

Your spouse is oddly silent. Was it something you said, or did, last night?

Nevermind. The children are making enough noise for three, as they cheerfully break their new toys.

The holidays, thank God, are over. It is time to think about the new year. Do you want to go through this again?

It is time to consider my modest holiday proposal.

I wish I could take credit for this, but it comes from the woman in line next to me at the drugstore. I don't know her name. Another shopper had jabbed me in the ribs with a roll of sale wrapping paper, then pushed me into a pile of 40 percent-off poinsettias.

As the woman helped me out of the pile, she said, "The holidays should be celebrated every other year."

Just that one line. Then she coolly vanished into the hot, angry shoppers, like one of those angels in the movies.

But her words stayed with me. Ever since, I've been thinking: What if we did celebrate the holidays every other year?

I'm not talking about the religious part. In fact, as part of my plan, the holidays would be purely religious every other year. If you're not a churchgoer, you could simply enjoy a peaceful day away from work.

What we'd miss is the rush, the pressure and the mall madness. Here are some of the things we wouldn't have next year:

* No fighting for parking spots at the mall.

* No fighting with your relatives.

* No rushing from his relatives to yours.

* No cookie baking.

* No trying to pass off slice-and-bake cookies as homemade.

* No shopping.

* No returns.

* No wrapping presents on Christmas Eve.

* No waiting in line to see the mall Santa.

* No putting up Christmas lights on the only nice Saturday in December. …

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