It’s 20 days before Christmas.
We all need some escapism and frivolity especially now, when cheery holiday music is on our stereos or piping through our streaming services. It’s not? Well it should be. If it’s not, I recommend dusting off those old records you break out every year, put them on your turn table and escape into the soothing tones of Bing Crosby’s “White Christmas.” And if that’s too commercial for you, then whatever it is you have that helps kickstart your holiday feels.
This is an American blogging about the holiday so filter your judgment, please.
Maybe the kiddies are watching any of the old Rankin-Bass classics? You know the ones.
For the adults who need escapism I recommend the “The Marvelous Mrs. Maizel.”
Adding smoked paprika into your coffee grounds sounds weird but it brings some warmth and depth to your coffee. Ok, maybe that’s not your thing. Add a little cardamom and cinnamon instead. You can’t go wrong with the classic holiday spices.
We broke out our cheap espresso maker when we found Illy espresso powder on sale. My husband loves to use the steamer on that thing to make the frothy milk for our coffees. Add a dusting of allspice and cinnamon. No sugar. The cakes, candies, biscottis and sweet comfort foods have enough sugar.
Starbucks, eat your heart out. We make better coffee drinks anyway. I’ll never step foot in your, or anyones’s cafe for that matter, again.
The escapism is good, in doses, yet we are being swallowed up by the gaping maw that is this dark anti-life bio techno neo fascism.
Furious, I read that “Meals on Wheels” in our Opportunity Zone will only offer pick-up-pre-made food to the hungry, IF they wear a mask.
Fascists. Scrooges. Fascists.
We want packed holiday markets, children rushing to sit on Santa’s lap, toddlers having meltdowns because they want more candy. We want car rides on the coast – er, now in the snowy hillsides. We want packed malls with goofy elves with bells on their shoes hustling to their next mall gig.
But instead we get eerily quiet ghost-ey streets and malls and boarded up shops. And the ones that are open, are militant, unfeeling and cold with mask requirements, hand sanitizing stations and security guards ready to kick you out for not putting a slave muzzle on your face. Yet. These same streets and shoppes are lined with holiday lights and Christmas trim and sparkle as if to scream “EVERYTHING IS NORMAL, SEE?!?! ITS N O R M A L!
We WANT those badly performed Christmas plays and pageants at the local public school, run by the frazzled overworked underpaid teacher whose taken on this extra holiday task to direct unruly children who always forget their lines.
We want the Nutcracker Ballet, without a mask please. We WANT a tree lighting ceremony in person please, not an empty gesture of a holiday kick off event streamed on our computer screens.
We want house parties. We can still have those right? Overflowing homes with noisy chatter spilling out onto the sidewalks and streets of neighborhoods all across our country. Golden-lit living rooms, flowing wine, some kicked up egg nog, a silly gift exchange or a box with ornaments as a departing gift. Passed out children – way past their bedtime -sloppily being held by their parents as they are gently placed in cars for the drive home.
We want Mass, or church on Christmas Eve, everyone scooting over to make room on the narrow wooden pews. The traditional Christmas Story being spoken from the pulpit, the occasional Christmas traditional hymn being sung, a special performance by the choir, then the taking of communion. Afterward a quiet social hour and a reverent but jolly “Merry Christmas” before venturing out into the crisp night air, stars twinkling overhead, waving goodbye to our fellow parishioners as we all head home to prepare for the special day.
We want the Carolers, even the ones in their silly Victorian era costumes, bellowing out the holiday tunes as they stop on street corners, a rush of holiday cheer moving through your bustling last minute holiday shopping.
We want SantaCon, yes even SantaCon– with the drunken bros stumbling in their Santa Suits from pub to pub causing mayhem and disorder where ever they go. I used to hate them – now I’d give anything for one of them to bump into me while he’s stumbling & rounding the corner, with his sloshy beer in one hand and a candy cane in another, mumbling out his apology while trying to ask for my phone number.
Heavy heart right now.
Our friend in San Francisco lurched out to us, saying he is suicidal. We were there for him as much as we could. Deep regrets, for if he had just had the courage to get on the plane he would have escaped the most oppressive violent lockdown happening right now in the country – in San Francisco. Now he is trapped. Our refugees come to our house on the poor side of town, and say openly “It’s very peaceful here. Can we come back?”
We want something different. We have to make something different. We might have to experience a Dickensian life or a Dickensian Christmas, or two, before we wake from our long winters nap and make that something different happen, whatever it is.
I think maybe it starts with some coffee and cake and a conversation.
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