With November leaving us, we have already started decorating for December. Trees, lights, fences, and some yards with angels and mine, a huge Snoopy adorn the porch walkway. For some people it is a way of life at the end of the year to do this, for others, it is a task, or a burden of some sort. I have driven by some houses thinking, “How many strings of lights did it take to put that up?”
Well if you are anything like me, you close everything up with the utmost care. You place it in the boxes, as you will not want to bend a cord, or break bulb. However, when you pull the candy canes out, one of the stakes is broken. Then you have pull out the wreath that you do not remember how you had it strung last year, but you test it, and it works perfectly. Oh my, wouldn’t you know it, the one thing, that works, you can’t find way to get electricity to it. So you abandon the old for the new, and agree with yourself, as you have been muttering underneath your breath, and having a verbal conversation with yourself about the matter for the last 20 minutes, so that even family and neighbors are wondering if you need some mental help.
The three new boxes contain 120 icicle lights. A rational person would be thinking, nothing else works, why would I think a brand new product right out of the box would work? But on this day, around 40 degrees in the afternoon, Scott is out there in a pair of shorts and a t-shirt. One of these though processes would be his motivation. He would hurry, as he was so cold, he would have to, or he would be working so hard he would exceed the temperature outside and build up a sweat. I have never understood a man’s line of thinking, and I am not going to start now.
I do know that of the strands, not one worked, completely. He was began packing everything up and abandoned the rest of the project altogether. He packed up the lights to return and said, here you are. There is a glitch in my system, and I can’t do what I wanted to in my yard. No, I do not want anymore.
I kind of thought “Get up Scott, don’t stop now. Don’t let Christmas decorations defeat you! Call my mother, Laverne for motivation!” My dad used to tell us my mother should have been a drill sergeant by trade. Man, that woman can tell you what to do. And you can get a lot done under her command. It is just one of those agreements where you do as you are told, and don’t question her, and everything works out just fine.
I was saddened when dad told me she was too sick to go shopping on “Black Friday,” My mother is one of those people who can spend money with both hands. So when I read this past Cyber Monday was a record-breaking online shopping day. Sales were up 15% over the same period last year. Clearly more holiday shoppers turned to online retailers to get through their Christmas shopping complete than ever before. I knew my mother was a devious part of this team of top shoppers in a game against each other to bid against items.
I was hoping she would be part of the 7% in retail sales of 2010. She normally is out at midnight shopping for the best deals. It was reported that buyers spent that 11.4% at stores and malls, which is an increase of $1 billion from last year. We spent $18.00 on lights that didn’t work. The rest I spent on my giant Snoopy, and food to be prepared for the Thanksgiving feast.
I didn’t go shopping, as I am not the fight the mall kind of person, and I am prevented to do so without assistance. I will go sometime over the next two weeks. This week will be time for Christmas candy baking. I hope to have the aid of my friends, and together we will begin the “sweet” part of Christmas. Christmas isn’t Christmas without fudge.
Go ahead, splurge a little, and then go to Lincoln Parish Park, take a walk, and have a seat on a park bench, if you need to take a break.
Published November 24, 2011, Ruston Daily Leader, The Park Bench.