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December 17, 2008

The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom
William "Wild Bill" Blake

Bullet Train
Click images for desktop size: "Christmas Bullet Train" by Unknown
Last night we were watching this old Dave Fleischer cartoon. A Christmas themed one. Where these kids in the orphanage get these old cast off toys that crumble to dust within minutes. The kids are all crying. Christmas is over and ruined. Gramps, the Inventor, is driving past in his horselessHuman Desire sleigh. He hears the kids and decides to help them by taking all the knick knacks in the orphanage and remaking them into cool Rube Goldberg style Christmas toys.
Pretty inventive stuff in six minutes.
My friend asked me if I'd been raised to believe in Santa Claus. I didn't have an answer. I don't think so. I think I was raised more to believe in Gramps, the Inventor.
Frosty by LawnElf
Click images for desktop size: "Frosty" by LawnElf
My best childhood Christmas memory, my "Rosebud" was when I was five. I woke up Christmas day, all excited. I don't have a clue as to why. It was just that it was the day.
There was a Christmas tree and fanned out under the tress were 6 Mad Magazine comic paperbacks. I felt like the richest kid in the world.
Now I realize that my mother had been out on Christmas Eve and either got a tree from one of the lots for a dollar or two and probably ran to Thrifty's to pick up some close out decorations.
The Mad magazines I'd wanted. Mad magazine I thought was the epitome of sophisticated humour. What I actually liked were the loaded up panels of Wally Wood. I couldn't imagine how witty you'd have to be to load all those jokes into a single panel. I fretted over missing one of those jokes.
So I don't think I ever thought much about Santa Claus. I believed more in Christmas miracles. I still do.
Christmas Tree by WallColl
Click images for desktop size: "Christmas Tree" by WallColl
Even when the miracles don't happen I'm to stoic to let it dampen my enthusiasm for the next miracle.
I realize that it lets me feel like my entire life is filled with miracles. My little puppy is a miracle. The gentle dog and the giant dog are miracles. My friend is her own self contained miracle.
Everything that is good that has happened to me is a miracle. I think we all deserve miracles. Except Bush-Cheny. They deserve whatever an anti-miracle is.

It snowed last night. After the muck and the ice the snow was almost welcome. It was a light powdery snow. The dogs and I were still slipping around on the ice it concealed but no one, especially me, fell or hurt themselves.More Fun Comics

Since I'm in such a good mood it seems like the right time for some Anti-Christmas songs. I lost my copy of "Christmas in Jail" ("I was in the wrong lane and feeling no pain"), but John Prine's evil "Christmas in Prison" fills the gap nicely. It also has some pretty lyrics and a flash of ugly humour. ("Christmas in prison, food's real good had turkey and pistols carved out of wood").
Then there's the calm despair of The Emotions and "What Do The Lonely Do At Christmas", which is nothing else should bring comfort in knowing you're not the only person who feels that way.
The country blues of Lightnin' Hopkins' "Santa" and the country twang of Bill Harrison's "'Po Folks Christmas" balance the despair of infinite poverty against the hopes and dreams that might well be one day crushed but for now they're all we have.
Then there's the comedic vitriol of Blink 182's "I Won't Be Home For Christmas". I have way to many friends who've experienced too many Christmases like this. It makes me smile thinking about my Christmases that should have been like this, but for some reason they weren't ever that bad. Miracles, see?
Speedball Jr's "Rudolph's Secret" tries to be nasty but the great rhythm and piercing reverb leads are just too good to make it anything more than fun.

I'm stuck waiting for a Christmas delivery. A close out item. It will cheer everyone up. At least everyone who lives here.

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