Only a few days are left before Christmas Day and all of its holly-encrusted delights. Presents have been wrapped in charmingly cherubic wrapping paper, Christmas trees have been trimmed, gingerbread men have been decorated with ill-matched frosting ensembles...everything points toward good will and a joyous holiday spirit.
Please gag me with a candy cane. The holiday season isn't all baked ham and egg nog. Presents, trees, and gingerbread men are all well and good for materialistic, tree-hating cannibals, but let's take a closer look at some holiday statistics.
Over the course of this holiday season, three million unhappy individuals will discover too late that they are fatally allergic to the color combination of red and green; five million, three hundred thousand and four performances of "The Messiah" will be sung embarrassingly out of tune; seven hundred thousand and nine awkward couples in matching reindeer turtlenecks will inadvertently consume poisonous berries while attempting to canoodle under mistletoe; five hundred thousand and eighty-six utterances of "Happy Chan-oo-kah!" will set back Judeo-Christian relations by 500 years; and seventeen members of the Associated Union of Reindeer will finally reveal that aggravated syphilis was the true cause of Rudolph's luminous nose.
And, if you are expecting Santa Claus to pay a house call this year, don't hold your breath: old Saint Nick was just diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes and is now confined to a wheelchair and restricted to a steady diet of pureed wheat germ.
So, there you have it. Society has pulled the pine-scented wool over your eyes, and, as your faithfully-opinionated blogger, I have a moral obligation to A) burst your Christmas bubble, B) splinter your candy cane, C) amputate the limbs of your favorite gingerbread man, D) contaminate your egg nog with salmonella, and E) generally "grinch-ify" your Christmas in every way possible.
Truth be told, I may have a slightly ulterior motive when it comes to destroying your holiday spirit. It may be hard to believe, but my acerbic wit and cynical sarcasm were once decidedly pro-Christmas.
But then, one fateful Christmas in 1990, all of my Christmas spirit was disastrously and irrevocably destroyed.
In my color-coded Christmas letter to Santa Claus, I had asked for only one thing: Kiri te Kanawa's Christmas album. Yet, when the key moment arrived and I gleefully ripped open my Christmas present, I discovered not the charmingly alliterative "Christmas by Kiri," but rather that premiere Christmas album by...CHARLOTTE CHURCH!
It was seventy-three days before I was able to consume solid foods again.
Ever since that traumatic day, I have faced every holiday season with undeniable hatred. Plum pudding and baked ham turn to dust in my mouth; the scent of gingerbread makes me froth at the mouth; even the slightest hint of Bing Crosby singing "White Christmas" causes my right foot and left nostril to twitch uncontrollably.
After decades of extensive anti-Christmas therapy (involving several unnatural uses of reindeer antlers and Christmas ornaments), I have finally determined that the Christmas spirit is not to blame for my affliction, but rather Kris Kringle himself. After all, it was none other than Santa who gave me the wrong cd and thus burned the permanent image of sugarplum Charlotte Churches into my brain.
With that in mind, I have decided to postpone my war against other sopranos for the time being and focus all of my malignant power on that unnaturally rosy-cheeked, diabetes-inflicted figure of holiday evil. I urge you to do the same, if only to prevent the same unhappy experience from damaging another impressionable young soprano.
So, I beg you: inject your gingerbread cookies with gallons of insulin, spray your Christmas tree with poisonous pesticides, and set your sniper rifle to the "reindeer" setting.
I myself plan to build a roaring holiday blaze in my fireplace on Christmas Eve and enjoy some delectable Santa flambe.
Could someone please pass the salt?