Remember the languid weeks before Thanksgiving, when you purchased a few gifts and scheduled a few holiday get-togethers, thinking that this was the year you’d be ahead of the game? Thinking that this, finally, was the year you’d set yourself up to have a relaxing holiday? The year you’d parcel things out, the year you’d plan ahead? The year you’d practice time management and really allow yourself some space to actually enjoy the holidays? Well —
Oh damn it! Goddamn it! I hate to be the one to tell you this. Believe me, the news isn’t hitting me any easier. One moment, you’re secretly enjoying a pumpkin-spice latte and browsing J.Crew for your brothers’ gifts, which are still in your online shopping cart, now that you think about it, and the next moment, I’m lying to you about how Christmas is in two weeks when actually it’s in — one week and six days, AHH!
And Hanukkah starts even sooner!
It’s okay. Okay, take a deep breath. Okay. Remember in Empire Records when Corey (Liv Tyler) tells Gina (Renée Zellweger) that her dad always says “there are 24 usable hours in every day”? Remember that? I know what we’re supposed to take from it is that Corey was putting too much pressure on herself, and yeah we all remember the thing with the diet pills — “Diet pills?! DIET PILLS, OH, WHAT A SURPRISE!” — but maybe we can find a little comfort in her dad’s words, hmmm? Indeed, there are 24 usable hours in every day. And if we can just figure out a way to manage not sleeping for three days … using the full 24 hours Corey’s dad from Empire Records mentioned … assuming we get eight hours of sleep a night … we could accrue a whole 24 more hours —
Yes! That’s about nine Christmas movies, hmmm? Time to make at least 20 batches of Christmas cookies? If we can just stay awake for three days? Potentially a bad idea, yes, okay. I still think we can maybe calm down. Take another deep breath. Okay. What do we have left to do? Maybe it would help to make a list. Let’s think:
• Buy everyone gifts
• Feel our first bit of Christmas cheer
• Decorate the tree
• Have a cookie
• Watch a single Christmas movie
• Hear literally one carol, oh my God, what have we been doing? Where has the time gone? How do we let our life slip away from us, not just at Christmas but every day? Days turn into months, months turn into years, and where are we? And why? When is the last time we thought about — really thought about — what we were doing and what we wanted? It was probably around the last time we:
• ENJOYED CHRISTMAS!!!!!!
Okay. Deep breath. It’s fine. Take a moment to pause.
Okay. Let’s just keep it very simple. Is there a Christmas thing you’d like to do this year? One really good one? Take a few moments to think about it. You can spare them, I promise. Is there something that will make you smile? Something not too taxing, something sweet, something that will rekindle the bit of child left within your dead soul?
If so, I’d suggest doing it.