Marilyn Heltzer: Some advice for the upcoming holiday season
Thanksgiving and Christmas are just ahead. People love to tell stories and show pictures of their kids and grandkids. Now everything is on cellphones. In the old days, we'd stop one another in the grocery store and pull out billfolds and show pic...
Thanksgiving and Christmas are just ahead. People love to tell stories and show pictures of their kids and grandkids. Now everything is on cellphones. In the old days, we’d stop one another in the grocery store and pull out billfolds and show pictures, real pictures, of our treasured loved ones.
Shopping at the grocery store, now known as the supermarket, was formerly a woman’s work. Now there are dads with kids in carts, and you don’t know whether the child is a boy or a girl, because kids have long hair and short. They all have unisex names, too.
What do you call a kid named Briley, Dakota, Sydney or Hudson? You probably don’t call them anything at all, and just admire their pictures and if you forget anybody’s name, “there” with a smile, always works. “Hello, there.”
As does “excuse me”, “sorry” and all of the other amenities we learned as children.
Our mothers and dads taught us well.
Thanksgiving and Christmas are challenges, with all of today’s food allergies and many likes and dislikes.
My advice is just to go out. Folks can pick their own food, and there are many buffets around town. Except for the smaller towns, and then grandma or mom serves all. Pot luck works, too.
Now, the question of “Who Pays?” does come up. You can always put it “On the Card.” Or even pay cash, which is another thing of the past, but cash always works. And remember to tip 20 percent. Unless you’re eating at home, where no tipping is necessary.
There are even men who cook. But I’ll bet they don’t have the old recipes handed down from their moms and grandmas. Maybe the guys make things with kale, kohlrabi, exotic vegetables, and their favorite spice is cilantro. Which I have in my cupboard, but never use. And yes, I know how to spell cilantro, without using spell-check.
Christmas means decorating and gift-giving. I used to have the philosophy Just Send Money, which does work for some folks, but others want something to unwrap, say “thanks” to the giver or givers, and even send a thank-you note via the United States Postal Service. Hand-made gifts mean so much to the recipient. But I’m not a knitter, but I used to sew, and I do take some pictures.
But, oh I can shop!
Then there’s the matter of Christmas cards or letters. I send a few, but never electronically. That’s against my principles. I do have a few.
Have you ever received a printed card, from a man or woman or couple? I have, without so much as a greeting or anything hand written?
I’m perhaps uncharitable, but the folks who send those cards have a firm line crossed through their names, and get no greeting at all from me next year. I could say the same about addresses, but I’m very liberal about labels.
A person has to be liberal about a few things. Besides voting in the next election, and I could tell you who I’m voting for in November 2016, either Bernie or Hillary. Oops. Guess you know my political views now, although I shouldn’t have said anything because the voting booth is private. We all know that.
We will all give thanks. And observe whatever comes next.