Santa, I am writing to you because I know this year I won’t be allowed to see you in person to share my alphabetical list of Christmas wishes. That figures.
My restraining order has expired and I still am not allowed near you because of this stupid pandemic. Geez, you make one bad joke at a shopping mall Santa display and it scars your reputation forever. Probably just as well. This COVID weight gain is as real as is the fatigue it’s caused me, so I’ll spare you the knee replacement.
So, about this Christmas – I need your help. I am sensing people around me are starting to lose their, um, shining sense of humour. I get it. Tough times. No end in sight. There is a lot of frustration out there. Compassion is shadowed by fear.
To add to the mental health matrix, there are those people who keep referring to me and my loved ones as sheep because we believe in something as simple as basic hygiene and wearing face masks during a global pandemic. Look, you guys, I grew up in the punk rock generation so to be clear, your rebellious acts of online outrage are about as lame as a Barry Manilow album (sorry, mom, but Barry is no Sid Vicious).
I’m not offended to be called a sheep. I like sheep. They deserve respect. Sheep are adorable creatures. They give soft wool for comfy socks and sweaters and their milk makes excellent cheese. They are comical, too. They make funny noises. What’s not to love about sheep? If you want to throw my people an insult, pick a better creature.
I mean, I think of anti-maskers as lemmings leaping off cliffs, but hey, I still like lemmings, even if I don’t understand their rationale. Didn’t their mothers ever tell them, “Just because your friends jump off a cliff, doesn’t mean you have to follow them”? But, hey, it’s not my cliff. I prefer to live in a world where name-calling and fear don’t rule my objectivity, where I protect the people I love and the community I care about, and even those with a reckless disregard for all of the above, because I believe in doing good for the sake of living a good life. So on behalf of all us sheep, I wish a sincere Merry Christmas to all you lemmings. After all, Christmas is about the love of humanity. Peace. Joy. Goodwill to all. Don’t forget that.
I won’t see extended family this holiday, but I will set a place at the table for the ghosts of my Christmases past to honour their memories, including Grandad Waterhouse born on December 25, 1896. He was a character, alright. Stoic, strong with generous spirit and a legacy of brilliant mischief, my grandad participated in and survived two World Wars. He endured things I don’t even allow myself to imagine. On Christmas 2020, he would expect me to honour the reason for the season, spoil my children with love and have a good stiff drink to toast his birthday.
Grandad lived a long, full life with integrity. He would expect me to do the same. Be grateful. Be generous. Don’t take any crap. And remember, darkness is always broken by light. Hallelujah.
Santa, if you help me keep my perspective and sense of humour, I’ll forgive you for breaking chips in the dip last year. Don’t do it again. Baaaa.