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MARTHA SEZ: Tiny screams at holiday time

November 29, 2013
MARTHA ALLEN , Lake Placid News

Holiday time is here again, bringing up all of those controversial subjects and heightened emotions we've been trying to avoid all year.

Underneath the tinsel and glowing lights, if you squint your eyes just so, you can see Santa's elves pummeling each other and smashing up the ornaments. You probably thought it was the cat.

Listen. Barely audible over the jingle bells and distant sleigh bells you can hear their tiny screams. It's a good thing you're not fluent in elf language, because what they're screaming is not pretty.

Instead of being grateful that they have each other and a regular job and plenty to eat, Santa's elves are arguing about, well, pretty much everything.

One of them wants turkey for Thanksgiving, another insists on going vegan. Even if they go with traditional turkey, there are still differences of opinion about how it should be cooked. Just because your mother cooked it that way doesn't mean I have to eat it like that for the rest of my life. Green bean casserole with Campbell's mushroom soup isn't exactly sacred, you know. The Pilgrims didn't eat it. How do you know? I suppose you were at the first Thanksgiving?

Some of the elves want only tiny white lights, saying they hate colored lights; others must have colored lights. Children can choke on jingle bells. Mistletoe berries are poisonous. Freddy is allergic to evergreens, yes, but I will not have an artificial tree in my house, thank you very much. When I was growing up, no one was allergic to Christmas trees! Pointsettas are poison, too, and you always have those. No, they are not poison, and it's poinsettia, not pointsetta.

I want an all blue and silver tree this year, not all these stupid ...

That's the fifth time you've said stupid. It's not a nice word. What, you're counting? I didn't think you were even listening.

I hate glitter. It gets all over everything and you never get rid of it, just like these stupid pine needles. It's not pine, it's balsam. You grew up in the Adirondacks and you don't know the difference between pine and balsam? I just stepped on broken glass. Well, if you'd wear slippers. Well, if you'd vacuum once in a while. Oh yeah, like your mother, Mrs. Clean? It wouldn't kill you to vacuum. Vacuum yourself if it means so much to you. Yikes, I'm bleeding! Good. Don't get blood on the carpet.

Go to Walmart's, why don't you. That's the Christmas spirit. Buy another fake tree.

It's Walmart, not Walmart's. Go chop down another tree on old man McNaughton's property, like you always do. One of these years his rottweiler is going to get you, and when it does don't some crying to me. Never mind McNaughton's dog, I'll conk it over the head with my ax.

You know, Walmart makes their employees work on Thanksgiving. No, they don't. Yes, they do, and they don't hardly pay them. That's not grammar.

Everybody should make presents for the holidays, not go out and buy a lot of junk. Oh, great, bring our economy to a screeching halt. Don't you know the U.S. economy depends on the holiday season? Fine, just hand everything over to the Chinese on a silver platter and get it over with.

Spend Thanksgiving with us this year; you're always over at your in-laws' place, and I never get to see the children.

You give the children too many sweets. You spend too much money on them. We don't believe in giving them so many toys. Last year, we gave away most of their presents. What? Who to? I don't know, some orphans thing. You don't believe in charitable giving. What, I can't give presents to my own grandchildren?

No, we're having Dad and his girlfriend over. You wouldn't feel comfortable. She is so great with the kids!

I don't like thinking of Mom all by herself for the holidays. Oh yeah, well get used to it. She is so manipulative, boohoohoo. If we have to listen to Uncle Speedo talk politics again at the dinner table, I'll ... I don't know what I'll do.

Get drunk, probably, like you always do, and make a scene. You know, until I met your family, I used to think it was just alcoholics who behaved badly. But your family doesn't drink at all, and ...

Look at the time! I have to stop listening to the elves and go mix the stuffing.

Have a good week!



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