The Annual Christmas Message and a Few Bad Holiday Poems

Posted by OrdinaryJoe - December 25, 2020 - Features - No Comments

You better watch out–it’s time for my annual Christmas message.

As an Old Fart Baby Boomer, Christmas was not necessarily the most wonderful time of the year, but it was the most special. And it was especially special in my household because my parents were the biggest Christmas fanatics this side of the North Pole and because my brother and sister celebrated their birthdays in December. We would drag out the Christmas tree about a week after Thanksgiving. I would have to spend hours hanging up the stockings with care and putting up the ornaments in the perfect place on the Christmas tree. Eventually, my family and I would brawl like tag team wrestlers because having a Norman Rockwell-like Christmas can be so stressful. But in the end it was all worthwhile. I still remember the joyous awe seeing my first bicycle under the tree (a golden Schwinn three speeder with a banana set) as well as my GI Joe doll, Hot Wheels cars, Electric Football (that didn’t hold my interest for long–the offensive and defensive linemen played like jumping beans), and the board games of Concentration and Jeopardy! (and I still play the high tech versions of those games every now and then).

What made Christmas so special back in the Quasi-Stone Age of the 1960s and 1970s was television. True, there were the sappy Yuletide variety show extravaganzas in which people sang “White Christmas”, danced like klutzy Nutcracker ballerinas, and told lame jokes. But my parents loved these specials because it was about the only time of the year in which they could see the musical stars of their youth (e.g., Bing Crosby, Perry Como, Bob Hope, Andy Williams, Dean Martin, and Guy Lombardo) perform.

Meanwhile, us Boomer kids were bedazzled watching old-time holiday movies. I especially liked the Alastair Sim version of “A Christmas Carol”. Sim is still the definitive Ebenezer Scrooge, and the movie captures perfectly the bleakness of Dickensian London, though on Christmas Day, everything is merry and bright and Scrooge becomes a wonderful miser.

We were even more bedazzled watching classic television animated specials like “A Charlie Brown Christmas”, “How the Grinch Stole Christmas”, and “Frosty the Snowman” for the first time. I remember discussing with my classmates the highlights of these specials for hours and singing off-key versions of “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch” and “Christmas Time Is Here”. Naturally, the teachers gave us dirty looks, but we didn’t care–cartoons were our Yuletide version of “must see TV”.

A highlight–or, more accurately, a lowlight for those of us whose who weren’t budding thespians–for Boomers during the holiday season was the annual school pageant. I disliked these pageants because I couldn’t sing worth a candy cane lick, I couldn’t act my way out of Santa’s bag, and I was more like Fred Flintstone than Fred Astaire on the ballroom floor. But somehow our classmates and parents loved us, even though if we appeared on a show like America’s Got Talent, we would have been booed off the stage within ten seconds.

Ah, it was a terrific time being a young Boomer at Christmastime. Even in this age of coronavirus, climate change, and the miscues of the Dallas Cowboys (heh, heh), it still is a terrific time. Just remember that it is a time of frivolity and fun. Keep smiling during those wild family melees at the dinnertime table over President Donald Trump’s latest gaffes. Also keep smiling if you get underneath your Christmas tree a Billy Bass, a Chia Pet, or one of those ludicrous sweaters that has Rudolph drinking an adult beverage with Santa. And even keep smiling if you run out of eggnog or if Santa gave you a lump of coal in your stocking.

Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Wonderful Kwanzaa, a Delightful Winter Solstice Day, or whatever holiday you celebrate this time of the year! Joy to the world, and good will to all.

And what would Christmas be without Clappers, stale fruitcake, and bad Yuletide poems from the Ordinary Joe? I know these verses aren’t “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas”, but as the saying goes, it’s the thought the counts.

Roses are red
Santa wears red.
Rudolph’s nose is red
From playing reindeer games.

Roses are red
People are blue
During the month of January
When the holiday bills are due.

Roses are red
Santa is in town
Giving gifts to everyone
And laughing like a clown.

Roses are red
Santa’s acting naughty
Doing the wild thing
With a smile so haughty.

Here’s a holiday limerick:

There was a man named Kris Kringle
Who made kids of all ages tingle
When they saw
Gifts large and small
And their bells began to jingle.

And a Hallmark greeting card type of poem:

Roses are red
The snow is white.
Which makes Christmas
Happy and bright.

Seasons’ Greetings!

Joe’s Maybe Memorable Quote of the Day

We need a little Christmas and a lot of Christmas gifts.

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