Tuesday, December 26, 2006

You're a No-Good, Grinch-like, Bastard of an Uncaring Christmas Mood Killer Dad!

Yes, that is right. I did everything possible to screw up Christmas for the imps. And I almost succeeded.

But Dennis, you seemed to be sooo into your imps. What happened?

Well, I apparently happened. Or as my brother put it, 'It just goes to show you how much he does not love his kids...'

How? How you might ask?

Well, we decided to keep the annual tradition of celebrating Christmas at my older Sib's house (his wife likes to decorate gingerbread houses with the imps).

So, two days before we leave, wife.imp is frantically purchasing last minute gifts and wrapping everything right up to the night before we leave. She even has special paper for 'Santa's Gifts' (I am supposed to get rid of this so the imps do not find it. It is hidden in my desk at the moment. But do not tell the wife, she does not know yet).

The day we are to leave, wife.imp has to go to work for a 'few hours' and believes she might be home by noon, at the latest. (It is raining and I do not relish driving all night to the northern end of Illinois in this weather only to unload the van in the wet in the early a.m.) Around 1 p.m. I am seriously considering cancelling the hotel and staying home for the holiday. When she calls after 3 p.m and advises that she is on her way home, I start rushing our luggage to the car. Having worked from a list, we only need wife.imp's clothing contribution and we are out the door and on the road!

When she calls after 4 p.m. (her commute usually lasts 30 minutes at worst), I detect a slight trace of annoyance in her voice. After her 5 p.m. call (an accident closed exits along 5 miles of the highway and she has been routed an extra 30 minutes in the wrong direction) I am seriously wondering if this weekend is going to be worth the effort.

However, even under the imps watchful eyes, I packed the car (did I mention I was working from a list?) with the presents for the nephews...wife.imp had gifts wrapped for our kids (both from us and from Santa) but knowing we would be going to the grandparents the day after Christmas, I left them in their hidey hole so that the little ones would have something to unwrap infront of the grandparents.

Did I mention that THE LIST I was working from was written expressly for my by wife.imp?

The afternoon prior to 'THE DAY' as we reclined in my elder brother's living room in Northern Illinois (a full 10-hours from our house!!), wife.imp looks at me and asks, 'Where are their gifts? I don't see the imps gifts under the tree.'

me: (smiling) oh, they're at home. I thought we'd bring them to mom and dad's Tuesday.
w.imp: Why would you think that? I mean...geesh! I spent..! What are they going to have to open tomorrow? Shit! Are they just supposed to sit there while everyone else unwraps gifts?
me: (not smiling) ummmmmm
w.imp: Now what--I have to go shopping.

brother.imp: (this is my younger brother who is not being very helpful) Ooooh, the day before Christmas! The malls will be full too! and bad traffic!

Thanks Bro! I see the family tradition of 'When you see a sibling in hot water, you make a nice soup!' has not been forgotten!

So wife.imp takes the family van out to the malls (in a city we have been to all of 5 times our entire lives, during one of the busiest days of the year, when all of the worst drivers are on the road flagrantly displaying their road-rage driving skills-- all by herself). My punishment? I got to sit at the house with the kids, waiting for wife.imp to come back from the latest shopping trip and gift-wrapping fiesta with her Christian spirit intact.

Oddly enough, gift-wrapping usually makes wife.imp glow and her mood brightens like the noonday sun. I was less than confident that this trip would replenish her sparkling mood, and when 7 p.m rolled past with no wife.imp to be seen...

As she later informed me, there is 30-plus years with this story. I believe I can expect to have it pulled out, buffed and repeated each and every year, probably when we start setting up the Christmas tree.


Jenny said...

Oh yeah...you'll be hearing about this one ever Christmas for the rest of your life.

My wife badge demands that I yell "BUT YOU WERE GIVEN A LIST!"


Diana said...

If you throw the list in her face she will still find a way to say you should have ASSUMED that your kid's gifts should have been there.

Can't wait to hear how many times she says this story next year! LOL!

dennis said...

Did I mention prior to the incarnation of said List that wife.imp issued verbal instructions and, not believing I would get it right, compiled said List