Let me take you, Dear Readers, into the late 80s and early 90s……entering a Canadian suburban townhouse on Christmas morning. The year may change, but the setting will remain the same. It will be like Groundhog’s Day, except set on Christmas Day, where the only thing that will be morphing is everyone’s age.
First, take note of the time: It is a ridiculous 4:32am. Doesn’t matter because a 6 year-old Bossy or a 17 year-old Bossy cannot sleep on Christmas morning. I will be tossing and turning and giving myself horrible bed head as I wait for the agreed-upon wake-up time of 7:30am.
Secondly, take note of my Dad. His running gag is to refuse to get up, but my younger brother and I are not permitted to leave the upstairs of our home until he is awake. Notice how my excitement is hitting such a fevered pitch that the only way I can handle the adrenaline is by jumping off and on my parent’s bed. 4 or 15 years-old – doesn’t matter.
Thirdly, take note of the gift haul: it’s insane. We were not terribly wealthy but my folks seemed to find hidden cash at the holidays to spoil my brother and I rotten. It may have just been the four of us every Christmas morning but if you looked under the tree, you would assume we were hosting the town.
Fourthly, take note of the lay-out. If it’s close to the tree, it’s a filler gift. If it’s snaked past our entertainment unit, sitting a good 10 feet from the tree, it is the motherload. The whole morning will be working towards that corner of the house.
Fifthly, don’t be alarmed by the amount of paper amassing. Yes, only 1/8th of the gifts have been opened but each one has been wrapped a minimum of 8-27 times.
Sixthly, don’t be alarmed by the time – already 12 noon. Yes, there is still a whopping 7/8th’s of the gifts still to open but all that unwrapping takes time. Especially when you notice…
Seventhly, don’t be alarmed – everyone is opening with scissors. Finger ripping is for hooligans.
Eighthly, try to disregard the angry shouting about turkey coming from the kitchen. Both of my parents hate to cook. Cooking turkey brings out a whole other level of disgust. If they argue about it long enough and loud enough, I believe they hope it will cook to perfection via negative energy in the home.
Ninthly, remember that any gift’s given that are in reference to the movie A Christmas Story give you bonus points and add an extra 25 minutes to the clock in order to discuss the moment of comedic brilliancy. Examples: Heavy weights dropped in a lap, Lifebuoy Soap, anything with the word “Fragile” on it.
Tenthly, the gift that you wanted, more than any other gift in the whole wide world, will not be under the tree that day. Or the next day. Or the next day. The tale of that torture is for another post.
The ghost of Bossy’s Christmas past wishes you a Merry Christmas.