Wednesday, November 29, 2006

The size of one's purse

I find that Christmas is like a purse.

You carry a cute little clutch and you pare down to essentials. House key, cash, ID, lipstick, acceptance speech, possibly cell phone and you're fine. You can get through anything you need. You upgrade to a nice Coach shoulder bag and you definitely take the cell phone, probably wallet, check book for sure, some face powder and mascara and your PDA, stick those letters you want to mail in the outside pocket. Those stylish hobo bags are just an accident waiting to happen. You can pretty much throw your clutch and the shoulder bag right in there still full of their items. Add a book to read, hairbrush, notebook, bottle of water, snack, just one small sweater to drop at the dry cleaner, some hand sanitizer and you're pretty much a chiropractor's wet dream.

With Christmas, though, it's emotion and you're not exactly the one carrying the bag. It's like some other bigger being is stuffing a purse and depending what sort of event they're attending you have to deal with what they decide to pack.

Last year it must have been some swanky evening event. My Christmas was like that clutch Renee Zellweger wore the year she won some award. I crammed a lot of tiny, shiny, important things into my celebrations. I had short but pleasant and meaningful visits with everyone that I wanted to see. We accidentally started a new tradition of an evening of kick off drinks with my generation of friends. The glitches were minor, the schedule ran like a German train time table and I felt that I'd done the very best possible job at the experience of Christmas for me and for the people I love.

Six years ago apparently someone decided to go on a hiking trip for the holidays. Two dead grandparents (one from each side of the family for that evenly spread feeling of crapitude), selling of the homestead, angry great aunt, broken car, adulterous affair going sour, frigid temperatures...after the snowstorm. I remember sitting at a TV tray in my Great Aunt's living room with my mother and practically shaking with anger as I showed her the 2 months of unpaid bills I'd been carrying in my backpack. She just paid them all even though neither of us had any actual money and I just sat there feeling equal parts relieved and like Princess Loseria of Loserdonia.

This year is shaping up to be a very large shoulder bag for me. For others it's going to be that goddamned hike. Shoulder bag and balancing act and a wait and see attitude. Nothing we Capricorns like better than a wait and see attitude. Oh yeah.

I hope you're getting the evening clutch. Or if you get the shoulder bag it's full of pretty, shiny, light things.

And...the dog just horked up everything she's eaten in the last 2 hours undigested and largely unchewed so I've got to go.

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