Who ordered the scrambled brains?

Memoirs of a Pilipino-Irishman

Christmas Fever

Like any aimless writer, I have a list of things I’d like to explore through writing. Actually, I have four lists: one on my desktop, one on my laptop, one stored in Yahoo! Notepad, and one on a real life notepad on my real life desktop. But I preempt those fascinating seeds of knowledge, each one a tome, a treasure, a universe in itself, to write about an illness of the mind to which I have today succumbed.

I got a fever, and the only prescription… is Christmas. (Loosely adapted from that one SNL sketch about golden diapers or something.) It’s September, and I have Christmas Fever. I keep imagining overcast weather, walking around my apartment freezing, sitting on a cold toilet seat and needing to turn on the heater and then smelling the dust burning on it’s coils. I keep thinking about early nights and seeing the shiny cheap tinsel bought with taxpayer dollars on all the street lamps. The excitement and stress of buying presents on my credit card; thank god(s) my credit score is out of the double-digits. “Now is this the doodad that has elements of both my quirky interests and so-and-so’s less quirky interests? …Yes, it is! I’ll be adored and admired forever!”

Going to family gatherings, the only time of year I’ll see stuffed, roasted turkey, mashed potatos and gravy, baked ham, cranberry gelatenous stuff, and apple pie alongside lumpia, pancit, some dish featuring sayote, casava, adobo, sinigang, kare kare, lichon and my personal favorite, dinuguan. It’s the only time I’ll ever smell all of that at the same time too; the smells combine to form some sort of super-smell. Fresh-baked chocolate chip cookies, peanut butter cookies, orange wreaths, sugar cookies, ginger cookies, and those ones with the Hershey’s Kiss smashed into the middle. Old Christmas tapes my dad made… And Christmas music, popular and classical! My family gave me great memories associated with Christmas.

This year I think it’d be nice to host some sort of Christmas gathering at my apartment. An artificial Christmas tree littered with the 200 pack of blue bulbs for $1.99 from Target. Balcony adorned with the 2000 pack of blue bulbs for (everyone together now) $1.99 from Target. Heat some Trader Joe’s turkey pot pies, maybe some Trader Jose’s black bean and soy chorizo taquitos for appetizers–no, I mean, for “hors d’eurves.” And play my Starbuck’s Christmas CD, entitled A Merry Affair. Merry, indeed, I’d say! Cap the night by caravaning to the local Coldstone for dessert.

Seeing my breath condense in the crisp atmosphere in front of me, like when I used to blow fake smoke from a fake cigarette I was smoking. Brrr! I cannot wait.

Dedicated to Tom McGranahan. Happy Birthday, dad! Thank you for so much.

Audio of this entry. (MP3) New version as of 4:56pm PDT. In the original, I sounded way too much like Ira Glass!

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Commenting options at bottom.
dmarcus said:

very nice image dude…makes me think of christmas, and hungry. Oh hey, if you ever have time I just discovered this one pretty good Filipino restaurant in downtown; maybe we can catch up and have some “real” food…ahem. haha. Do you still keep in touch with Jamie?

Mike said:

I’m down for real food any time, any place. I can no longer stand the torment of these air donuts I’ve been mime-biting into all year… ever since I lost my VIP card for the Donut Hustler. Take my credit card, my driver’s licenses, heck, go hog-wild with my Blockbuster card–it’s on me. But for the love of god and all that is holy, leave me my eating priveleges, my only true source of dignity in this repugnant, ignoble existence.

[Takes another mime-bite of air donut, as camera zooms out, pans across barren cityscape to the downtown skyline at dusk. Media helicopters buzz like voracious wasps around the U.S. Bank Tower, where a suicidal man, fed up with the insensitivity of American culture, scurries like a cockroach to get out of their spotlights. And barely, just barely visible off in the distant, far distant horizon–so distant as to render it practically invisible–Godzilla beats on some wretched, pathetic dilapidation of low-class, mixed-use, high-rise real estate. …Real estate which, at the moment, was wishing it was not real at all.]


No, haven’t kept in touch with Jamie. You?

shaun said:

I want to plug my new website. www.shauntime.com.

See you all next time!


P.S. I was fancying us making a giant paper mache Santa Claus head for the balcony.

Paper Mache mix
Mixing bowl
Santa portrait
Paints and Brushes

Mike McG said:

Ohh! Cinammon! Does that mean we can eat it when Christmas is over? Like a final Christmas meal?

Tara Bartolome said:

Shaun, you bastard! Thanks for making me feel like the ultimate ass. I clicked onto your link and got what? yeah, that’s right, absolutely NOTHING! You have accomplished the impossible. ;-)

Boys, cinnamon is all well and good, but don’t forget that we must embrace all cultures this fine holiday season…We can also build a 10 foot manora that we could light every night of Chanakah (whenever that is), and we could also make some _____________ for whatever Kwanza people do. Perhaps some sugar cookies with Bill Cosby’s face on them? I think Oprah would find that very humanitarian of us, and maybe send our entire family on a trip around the universe (twice).

Ahhh…Christmas, the scents of frying oil and turkey. YUMMY!


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