Thursday, December 20, 2012

God Bless the Christmas Sweaters

I wrote this last year, but if you don't mind I'd like to send it 'round again.----God bless the Christmas sweaters. All those Seasons Knittings displaying snowflakes and Christmas trees…cardinals on holly branches…snowmen and snowwomen and reindeer with red noses…even wise guys and mangers and good St. Nick himself. They start showing up around Thanksgiving and multiply through the season like little Holiday bunnies until just before Christmas…in any given church…in any given city…there comes a Sunday that explodes with a massive, magnificent display of wooly Christmas spirit that takes the breath away. A display that confirms to all mankind that despite this world’s greed and meanness… thoughtlessness and ego…selfishness and blindness…there are still good people. Good people who in their hearts, still hope that reindeer can fly and that angels really do talk to shepherds about wondrous things. Good people who still wish for Peace on Earth and Goodwill toward men. God bless the Christmas sweaters.

Monday, December 17, 2012

To Jack Amelia used to say

I want the world to know you were here Jack. I want the world to know you mattered. I want the world to know you counted. I want the world to know you loved us unconditionally and we loved you. I also want the world to know you could be a pain in the ass. You never did figure out that the buzz from the dryer was not an attack on your kingdom. Or that you didn’t really own the neighborhood and other people and critters were allowed to pass through without you giving them the what for…every single time. Or that someone ringing a door bell on TV was…on TV. I want the world to know you were a happy guy Jack. And that you charged through your life full speed right up to the end. I’m not quite ready to say good bye and move on yet buddy. I want the world to know you were here Jack…and that you were a good boy.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

A Christmas Gift

This is one of my favorite Christmas stories. I hope you won't mind if I take a moment to share it with you again. -----Every year, just before the Holidays, the student government of my kids’ high school puts on a dinner for the residents of one of our local senior citizens centers and homeless shelters. It’s quite an affair with roast turkeys, mashed potatoes...lots of gifts, games and songs. My daughter, being Senior Class President, was very involved. She surprised me by showing up back at home about halfway through the party. As she rushed through the door I could tell she had been crying. She threw herself into my arms...shaking with tears. “Dad”, she sobbed... ”There’s an old man there with no coat and a different shoe on each foot. We have to do something”. So, we gathered up a couple of unused jackets and a pair of pretty decent tennis shoes and off she went. She came home after the party was over and stood quietly by herself in the kitchen. I put my arm around her and asked how everything went. She told me that when she gave the shoes to the old man he said, “Thank you honey. I know someone who can really use these”. She said, “But these are for you”. He smiled at her and said these words. “Thank you sweetie, but see here...I’m lucky. I already have a shoe for each foot”. Merry Christmas.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

World Travelers

So, I’m putting on my gym pants the other night, getting ready to do my nightly ten mile run on the treadmill when I noticed it. OK…I walk and trot for 20 minutes, but I did discover as I got ready that my gym pants…had been to Viet Nam. It said so right on the label. Made in Viet Nam. Then I realized my sneakers had been to China. It got me thinking, so I went to my closet and hush my mouth and call me Shirley…I was amazed. I have sweatshirts that have been to Honduras, shirts that have been to India and shoes that have been to Mexico and Brazil. Incredible. I found t-shirts that have been to the Dominican Republic…even some of my socks have been to Thailand. In the words of Charlie Brown “Good Grief”. I’ve never been to Europe, but I have underpants that have been to Guatemala.