Wednesday, December 27, 2006
Sometimes the best of intentions and the highest of hopes can't work together to produce a merry little Christmas, no matter how hard everyone tries. In the case of our family, the larger the group, the more chance something crappy is going to happen to set everyone a-tizzy. This year, my sister and I spent hundreds of dollars on food, hours and hours on cleaning and preparing and planning to have it all turn to a quivering mass of neurosis and insecurity. It is like a chain reaction in this family. When something happens to set one person off, it causes a ripple effect that goes through each and every one of us and brings every unattractive personality trait in each person directly to the surface. Night one started out as planned - everyone was enjoying and chatting and feeling the anticipation of good times to come. Then it happened - one person stated an opinion, the second person dissed the first person and we were all off and running. Some tried to defuse it, but you can't defuse a bomb that has already gone off. Over the next several hours, one family retreated to safer ground for the evening, and the next night an entire branch of the family tree decided not to attend. In the midst of all of this were many secret meetings and discussions, and all manner of analysis. In the end, despite all of our best efforts, everyone left the holiday celebration feeling a little screwed and a lot relieved that this Christmas is now history. Next year, I am seriously contemplating a trip to Hawaii!