Monday, December 17, 2007

The Magic of Christmas™

You know how in every hack Christmas movie (where you’re shouting at the screen, “Can we just fast-forward to the end to learn a Very Important Lesson about how the real meaning of Christmas is spending time with our families?”) there’s that moment where some adult character learns to believe in the Magic of Christmas™ because Santa leaves them the toy they wanted as a kid? (That or it’s how the girl knows the guy is the one for her when he comes through with an Easy Bake Oven that her sister got instead of her. Really? Thanks, you mean you want me to cook us one brownie at a time? Like I don’t have better things to do as an adult? Or maybe you only see me as the little woman who cooks for you? Is that it, you ungrateful bastard? Cause I slave and I slave in this kitchen to make dinner and now you want me to cook with an infantilizing pink oven in my free time too? You know what? We’re breaking up.)


I had some awesome Christmases as a kid. Cabbage Patch Kids with their funny names (Nora Emmaline? Why the hell not.) and tattooed butts. A doll swing that I’d later dismantle and use as Nora Emmaline’s wheelchair when I wanted her to have cerebral palsy like my classmate Crystal. Art supplies enough to tickle my fancy all year. Board games I would immediately lose all the pieces to. A purple toothbrush! A stable’s worth of My Little Ponies.

I was just telling my sister the other day about how one year we were done opening gifts (probably at 6 a.m.) and I forgot it was a weekday – because Christmas exists in its own time-space continuum, not beholden to a mere day of the week – and my dad turned Sesame Street on. I immediately passed into a happiness-overload coma.

Amidst all these Christmas memories, I was reminded of the gift I never got…glitter for our dining room floor. Sure, it was a nice enough floor, but it lacked that certain oomph that sets good dining room floors apart from the great, uh, discotheques. I distinctly remember in Christmas 1984 writing: Care Bears, books, Play-Doh, glitter for the dining room floor. What can I say? I’ve always had an eye for interior design.

I’ll never know if it was the newborn twins in my house or my parents’ general aversion to awesome things, but Santa did not deliver. Well excuse me for wanting to pep up the joint, Old Saint Nick. I sang songs to and about you, I’ve created art in your likeness, I corresponded with you for a decade.

This is your year to make it right! Maybe it’s enough to start believing in the Magic of Christmas™ again. But God help you if you give me an Easy Bake Oven.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Dysfunction Junction: The accurate version

I’m nothing if not committed to the utter and complete truth in every entry. (If I say I saw Al Roker, you'd best believe I saw him. And that he's really a wee 3' 7".) So it excites and pains me to report we have our first correction here at Postcards. (Unrelated sidenote: I was always jealous Red could call her old blog The Tent. Mine doesn’t shorten into anything cool. The Po’? Meh. Moving on.)

My fabulous sister, Annie, has been good enough to email me and add info to the Dysfunction Junction family story. (Although it sheds little light on how these people got to be how they are.)

Please to enjoy…

First of all, the mother is only missing her two front teeth so I suppose around this time of year she might have issues saying "sister Susie sitting on a thistle" but she does have 2 fake teeth but chooses not to wear them most of the time.

There was an incident during the first deployment when some other neighbors and I were standing outside talking one chilly October evening and the younger son (not the one evicted) stormed out of the house only wearing shorts and was kicking their truck as he is yelling curse words about his mother. About 30 seconds later we hear the door open thinking the mom would try to get her son to come back inside out of the cold but instead threw a wife beater and track pants and I think shoes outside and slammed and locked the door. He put those on and then proceeded to walk down the street. I peeked out my blinds that night before I went to bed and there he was, sitting on their porch.

Now to correct the car story....I think he was 17 or 18 at the time he was evicted and he was going to buy an old purple Saturn that our neighbor was selling and live somewhere with it, definitely not in the driveway considering that he was ordered to not come on their property after the 30-day notice of eviction. She threatened that she was going to buy the car and give it to her daughter, his younger sister but she ended up not doing that and I don't think he bought the car either. He now has a baby momma (that's right someone decided to sleep with him) and I think he's in some Job Corps school somewhere.

The last story I will share is when (friend) came down for Valentine's Day of 2006. We ordered a pizza and were waiting for it to arrive when we noticed lights flashing outside and cops were at the house I think breaking up a fight. When the pizza arrived, the delivery guy said "Man they're fighting again? They were fighting last week when I delivered a pizza on this street." I think it's a bad sign when Papa Johns knows you have issues.

So there you have it. I'll see you at Maury Povich.

Friday, December 07, 2007

I continue to recommend shows you’re already over

I have some sort of super insomnia where sometimes my body just refuses to sleep. I remedy this with the Food Network or HGTV until they wimp out at 4 a.m. and switch to infomercials (p.s. Lindsey Wagner is really, really concerned about the mattress I’m sleeping on.) That is, until I discovered my new love: The Fresh Prince of Bel Air.

If you like Full House (and you do!) you’ll love black Full House! If you like Webster, you’ll love gangly Webster! If you like The Cosby Show, you’ll love Cosby updated for your early-‘90s lifestyle!

Finally, there’s no more hanging my head in shame when everyone else does The Carlton. I can join in! Check out Will Smith in neon overalls. Do you know he works that sideways hat and neon-striped shirt from the opening song throughout the pilot too? I forget, G, what West Philly gang wears bright yellow and green stripes. Crips? It’s the Crips, right?

I wasn’t allowed to watch Fresh Prince during its original airing (1990-1996) because it was too risqué. I think the rapping at the beginning threw my parents. (True story: America’s Funniest Home Videos and Full House were occasionally turned off too. God, I was a lonely kid.)

Speaking of the opening rap, I have a few questions, Will:

Is five verses really necessary to catch us up on the backstory?

Why is your mother 85?

Was it really the most efficient mode of transportation to take a cab from West Philadelphia to Bel Air?

What did you and the cabbie talk about the whole time? Did you rap for him?

Did you ever, in fact, “smell (him) later”?

Why is the Banks’ house so huge, but they didn’t even have a formal dining room?

And finally, your mom got scared after “one little fight” yet you get to Bel Air and you’ve been shot, unjustly jailed for stealing a car and taken hostage by an insane clown in your uncle’s courtroom (really!)? And those are just the few episodes I watched this week.

I’m starting to think that you shouldn’t be blaming those guys who were up to no good for your troubles.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Holiday wisdom


Basement of the Astor Place Kmart

Me: perusing Martha Stewart’s big shiny balls for my Jewish roommate’s and my pan-religious winter holiday decorations.

Other players: Assorted unenthused Kmart team members shuffling around ribbons, trying to look busy, shouting back and forth to each other.

Guy: I hate this department! The merchandise sucks. The customers suck.

I tip my hat to him. He’s remarkably unembarrassed.

Girl: You just gotta man up and do it, Trevon.

Guy: (Heavy sigh) You can’t man up in seasonal.