My Annual Lump Of Coal Distribution
Christmas morning is always an exciting time for millions of boys and girls who have been good all year. Under a beautifully decorated tree will be an assortment of gifts — some electronic gizmos, maybe a doll or two, some sports equipment and even some clothes. When we were growing up many years ago there might have been a buggy whip or a butter churner. Just kidding, but back then an erector set or a Sears J.C. Higgins bicycle was a most welcome gift from Santa.
For the youngsters who might have been a bit ornery during the year there was always the proverbial lump of coal in a sock. We lived in a home with a coal fired furnace so there was always an abundance of the black ore and most of the time it seemed to appear in my brothers’ and my socks for whatever reason.
And that brings me to sharing a lump of coal with people who I think either irritated or upset us or did something bizarre or stupid in the past year that qualifies them for this special distinction. Let’s call this Santa’s naughty boys and girls list. I prepare this list every year and yes, there are several repeats because some people never seem to mend their ways! So let’s get started:
A lump of coal goes to:
People who save seats at Holiday church services for family members or guests
who either arrive late or who never show up. Solution? No seats can be saved
during the 10 minutes before the service starts. Let the tardy sit on a folding
chair in the vestibule or hallway!
Stores who do not allow their staff to wish us a “Merry Christmas” for fear of upsetting some customers or the ACLU. When I encounter this situation I always make it a point to wish everyone within earshot a loud and enthusiastic “Merry Christmas.” And for the record, it is a Christmas tree not a Holiday tree!
Any politician who proposes cutbacks in Medicare and Social Security. I worked forty years and paid into these programs and thus I am entitled to the benefits without any new restrictions.
People who send out Christmas cards with a printed address labels along with their names printed inside the card. What am I? A business. If you can’t take the time to at least sign your name inside, don’t send me a card.
Store personnel who don’t greet us or smile or act as if we are imposing on their time. Maybe a trip to their competition will locate a salesperson who really wants my business.
Radio stations that insist on playing any Christmas song by Alvin and the Chipmunks. It’s over for the Chipmunks.
Any TV or radio weatherperson who predicts enormous amounts of snow only to discover that it passed by our region. With all the satellites and all the Doppler equipment available to these weather prognosticators, why do they get it wrong so often?
Shoppers who totally ignore the Salvation Army Red Kettle bell ringers. This is a once a year event and even some loose change is appreciated. Come on — drop some coins in the kettle.
Creeps who pilfer or damage figurines in outdoor Nativity scenes. Lowlifes caught doing this should be sentenced to portraying a donkey in a live Nativity scene.
Justin Bieber and Miley Cyrus – just because.
And a lump of coal for yours truly for being so cantankerous.