Ho-ho-holy wondering as I’m wandering


Christmas is closing in all around me, like an army of ants on a stale, crusty French fry.

I am the French fry.

I have barely done any Christmas shopping, and with my big move happening in 3 days, I’m not sure when I’ll have the chance to get some ho-ho-ho-ing done.

(I don’t think that came out right.)

Today is our office Christmas party. I have always dreamed of going to some fancy work soirée – a cocktail party on a Friday night where I can wear satin and sequins, and the drinks are free, and the food is good, and no one leaves without a fabulous gift bag of goodies and maybe even a Christmas bonus. However, our party is scheduled from 1-3:30, and includes macaroni & cheese, a magic show, and balloon animals.

Oh sweet mercy, I SO HOPE that it winds up being as amazing as I think it will be! Pam Beasley’s got nothing on me. Well, I suppose she has Jim.

Whatever. In all honesty, “Christmas cheer” isn’t really my style. I hate eggnog. Christmas trees leak sap. I don’t even turn on my heater, let alone use precious wattage for twinkly lights. I’m not a “festive” person – I’m not an upbeat person in GENERAL – and I don’t like Christmas music. It’s too sappy. Too cheesy. Too contrived.

You want to know what would be my kind of Christmas song? “Holly Jolly Melancholy.” I’m going to write it… because someone already wrote this one.

But on with my story: this morning, a co-worker brought me a pile of gifts to wrap. I’m the temp-receptionist – it’s my job – and in all honesty, I’m a ridiculously good present-wrapper. I can tie a bow like nobody’s business. So I was working my way through the pile of gifts, and for the very first time in my entire life I swear, I peeked at my present.

I have literally never peeked at one of my presents before. Ever. “Conscientious” is my middle name… except, of course, when it comes to cleaning up dog poop.

Anyway, the gift that I “didn’t” see: a glittery cowboy boot Christmas ornament.

And I love it. Really and truly, I do. Being the bah-humbug-er that I have been, I don’t have a single Christmas ornament – I don’t have a single Christmas decoration. This is my first one. And even with tree to hang it on, it made me happy to be thought of by my favorite co-worker. Maybe I’m not such a Grinch after all…



  1. [not the] Best Blog Ever on December 19, 2008 at 10:57 AM

    They gave you your own gift to wrap? Hee. LOVE it. That’s great! :)

  2. Julianne on December 19, 2008 at 11:01 AM

    I don’t think it’s even considered peeking when you’re wrapping your own gift. Too funny.

    Okay, Annie, go to: http://www.overtherhine.com and listen to the album that is on their “record player.” It’s their Christmas album…and it’s AMAZING. I think you’ll like it.

  3. luke on December 19, 2008 at 11:03 AM

    yeah a second that over the rhine album–that is good christmas music. it’s out there, i promise scroogina.

    merry christmas!

  4. MB on December 19, 2008 at 11:22 AM

    I’m against the over-the-topness of Christmas as much as anyone – as evidenced by the fact that my wife and I haven’t bought one present yet – but I can’t believe you don’t like Christmas songs! Yes, most of them are sorta cheesy and not lyrically groundbreaking, but don’t they remind you of happy times with your family? I can’t hear a Bing Crosby, Dean Martin, or Elvis Christmas song without remembering decorating the tree, sitting in front of the fireplace, listening for sleigh bells, opening presents in the dark, or putting a Santa hat on a ceramic dog. Maybe the last one doesn’t apply to you. I just can’t believe you’re a Scrooge Annie! I think making a conscious effort to stay out of malls this time of year helps keep the love alive too. I loved all holidays, and regular days, with my family – but Christmas – along with all its glittery, shiny crap and silly songs – was by far the best. And that was before we were all old enough to spike the eggnog.

  5. Lyla on December 19, 2008 at 12:07 PM

    At my company Christmas party, we had a secret Santa exchange. Want to know what present I received? A keg can of Heineken. Your co-worker thought, “Annie would like this.” My co-worker thought, “Ha ha… wouldn’t this be funny? Remember how Lyla went bowling with us and got completely toasted last week?” Kyle and I don’t have a Christmas tree out this year. Normally (meaning the past 2 years, anyway) we had a little fake tree decorated with action figures. Maybe you need a little fake tree to hang your one ornement on. I’m a little bit grinchy because people are crazy at the stores and what not, but I like the part of Christmas that’s about enjoying the people you share your life with. I hope that you have an enjoyable party and very nice holiday.

  6. Emily on December 19, 2008 at 1:13 PM

    Present wrapping is a wonderful skill. The Girl Scouts asked me this year if they could wrap my presents and I said, “No thank you. Wrapping presents is my favorite part of Christmas.” She just looked at me weird and asked the next person.

    Even if you don’t like the trappings of the season, Merry Christmas to you!

  7. Sarah on December 19, 2008 at 1:28 PM

    I can wrap presents quickly, but not well. You might the Squirrel Nut Zippers Christmas album from a few years ago. I love the video you linked to.

    Merry Christmas :)!

    My word verification is “rebel.” Heck yes.

  8. Hush and Such on December 19, 2008 at 1:41 PM

    Our Christmas party is like a bare butt ride down an icy embankment compared to yours.

    We get to (drum roll)…wait for it…(drum roll cont.)clean and organize our desks, while sipping beer (the unfestive drink of choice) and eating pizza in a forced social environment (which reminds me of junior high and smelly gym clothes).

    And you get gifts to boot! (and it was a boot at that, couldn’t resist).

    So while, I empathize with having to withstand a magic show and digging through Mac and Cheese, dear Annie, it could be much worse.

    Happy Holidays!

  9. Annie Parsons on December 19, 2008 at 2:21 PM

    Let it be known that the party is going on right now, the mac & cheese was to die for, I got some lovely-smelling soap in the gift exchange, and I am having a good time. :)

  10. Annie Peterson on December 19, 2008 at 3:08 PM

    :) Hope you have the most amazing Christmas ever with your glittery boot ornament!

  11. Tad on December 19, 2008 at 3:20 PM

    Hey, the Christmas Hymns are largely awesome. When Manheim Steamroller isn’t playing them.

    Tell me with a straight face that you don’t enjoy “Come Thou Long Expected Jesus”, or “Hark! The Herald Angel’s Sing” at least a little.

    Merry Christmas Annie. I hope this next year brings as many blessings to you, as you have brought to all of us.

  12. bec on December 20, 2008 at 1:06 PM

    haha you do internet even during the christmas party.

    did you film it?

  13. Christina on December 21, 2008 at 1:24 PM

    I had a fancy law firm Christmas party this month. The next week I was laid off.

    Two words: Over. Rated.

  14. Anonymous on December 22, 2008 at 8:49 AM

    I’m just sitting here wondering if you took a picture of yourself in a balloon hat at the party… That would be strange.

    Anyway, I REALLY wish I could be at your party. ;) Mac and cheese? Balloon animals? I’m dying over here! At least you got the soap. Pleasantly shocked that you enjoyed yourself! :)

    Merry Christmas
    Little Annie Parsons

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