Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Some Reminders

After a long day on the road to think punctuated by some intense family time I have, of course, a lot to tell you. Today just a few things skimmed off the top.

First and most important if I ever become as crotchety, frightened and downright cruel as my Aunt Rena (must be seen to be believed, I know you think you know but you do not) you not only have my permission but my insistence to put me in the passenger seat, get the car up to a healthy speed and OPEN MY DOOR. If you must give me a bit of a nonchalant (but forceful) shove so be it.

I've said it before and I'll say it again but let's remember and let's have it cached on the internet that when I go you should donate whatever they'll take and burn the rest. It is my plan to make that wish legally known this year, which I know I've said before but I do honestly think I'll get done this time. Weirdly it feels as though it will be easier since I don't have to worry who to ask to take the dog.

After I go I would actually like it if you'd have some kind of ceremony and get together. I suggest you go if it happens. There are a zillion reasons why but you don't need me to tell you about them just know that I've had a little experience in this area and going to the shindig does good things for you. (Don't cancel a vacation or lose your job or anything but if you can make it without dire consequences.) Even when it's hard. At my particular hootenany please have music you can sing along to. In harmony when possible. Please tell stories, they don't have to be "appropriate." If you can work it out to have it someplace where you can have an adult beverage with you while you tell the stories so much the better. (Stock up on hip flasks now.) Please serve various salads (ham, egg, chicken, tuna, seafood) on those weird finger rolls with a slit in the top, slightly undercooked Duncan Heinz brownies and punch with ginger ale for fizz. On the off chance I wind up doing a fly by those things will help me to understand that I'm really gone.

Last but frankly not least please continue to spread my important word about the dangers of the Yankee Swap. I know I usually re-print my cautionary tale here at this time of year but in the interest of helping a wider array of people I've slightly tweaked it and posted it in the Salon over at The Colony (should be up later today). I did not, however, include the recent story I heard where someone went to a Yankee Swap for her husband's company and wound up with a McDonald's hamburger with a bite out of it. Everyone else avoided the package because they knew the guy who donated it but did they warn her? Remember, friends don't let friends Yankee Swap. (Edited to add: It didn't wind up in the Salon. I don't know why. It actually wound up in a no man's land. You have to go to the main page and scroll down to see it. I'm really sorry it's not easier for you guys from here to find my stuff over there.)


  1. All good things...I need to get my shit together in this arena as well.'s at the top of the list. and I know it's a little crazy, but if and when you do head to the great chocolate factory and you do perhaps have an animal or five...I will come get them. it'll be ok. or hell. I may live next door by then.
    We don't call it Yankee Swap here, it's Dirty Santa and I have to say, I've never had to take home a crappy prize...perhaps we're not doing it right!

    glad you're home.

  2. I will definitely raise an adult-beverage-filled glass and nibble an undercooked brownie in honor of your passing but I will NOT eat ham salad. Mmm-k?

  3. Thanks for the well-wishes, Kizz. And, I agree on the importance of attending memorials. When my dad died, I had just had a C-section with complications. I could not fly to California for his memorial service. One of my biggest regrets is that I could not be there, but I can't undo that.

    And the yankee swap warning = well-heeded on this end.

  4. I'll make the brownies. I am counting on nver having to, but I'll make the brownies.

  5. Z, it's a worry, so thank you. I need the pets to be taken care of. Re: Dirty Santa, you're probably just hanging out with people who are way too well adjusted.

    Violet, you don't need to eat the ham salad, you just have to serve it.

    Seester, sometimes you just can't make it. I get that, too, but for myself it's always weird not to have had that piece of the puzzle.

    jrh, these are just contingency plans. Better a plan and no need than the reverse, right?