WAKE UP! It’s Christmas you son of a bitch! You may have spent the entire month of December complaining about commercialization and repetitive jingles and having to be in the same room as your relatives for more than thirty minutes but you can forget all that now because its CHRISTMAS! Welcome to Jolly Town; population, you.
Oh, come on, man, if you can’t find it in your heart to show some enthusiasm for one of the few calendar events where people don’t judge you for being an over-eating, slightly intoxicated, badly dressed layabout (and in fact actively encourage it,) then you’ve missed the entire point of the holiday season.
Before you go all Scrooge on me, I want you to consider something. Once, you were a child. And you believed in magic. And Christmas was the most magical time in your year. That child is still within you, my friend. The only difference is he now gets to pilot a fully operational grownup body like a god-damn crazy mech-suit! So lets bring the magic back, and celebrate the festive season like an utter MAN!
Step 1: Christmas Eve
For those of you without children, now is the perfect time to open up a six-pack and watch all three Die Hard movies back to back (yes, there are only three Die Hard movies, come on, stop ruining Christmas.) If you do have young kids, or a niece or nephew you’ve been trusted enough to watch over for the evening, this is where the real fun starts. Start by tucking the little sprigs into bed and maybe reading them a story. Then, have a friend in a full Santa Claus costume stand in view of the window, maybe shaking some sleigh-bells.
Explain to the wide-eyed children that there is an intruder in the garden, and that you will take care of it. Grab your nunchuku and say “If I’m not back in five minutes, call the cops.” Then go outside and begin the carefully choreographed kung-fu fight you have rehearsed previously with your Santa Claus volunteer. The fight should be fierce enough that a child won’t try to join in, but not so fierce that they will wake screaming for the rest of their days. When the fight has reached a stalemate, have Santa vault the fence and run away into the night whilst you scream “Next year, motherf@$%£r! Neeeext Yeeeear!”
For added authenticity, any gifts the children receive from “Santa” should be smeared with a little blood.
This may seem a little extreme, but you’ve given a gift that no cheap toy or badly knitted sweater could ever give. You’ve given the gift of wonder. Imagine when they get back to school and tell the other kids that not only does Santa Claus exist, but that they saw their uncle beat the crap out of him!
Step 2: Christmas Dinner
At a family gathering its usually the matriarch who handles dinner arrangements. Has Gordon Ramsay taught you nothing? Dinner is now man’s domain, and no feast is complete unless it has been made with your bare fists and cussed at profusely. So the first thing you need to do is find and kill your own turkey. I don’t want to hear any of that PETA crap from you, solider, this goes deeper than principles and the turkey knows it. Now put on your bandana and tackle that…huge…manic…feathery thing… with balls on its face…
You know what? You already had turkey at Thanksgiving, so just go out and get a tofu loaf or whatever. Now alternately mash or chop some vegetables (any vegetables, who cares), then smother everything with wine and honey and put that bad boy in the oven for your mom to worry about. Boom. Miller time.
For desert I recommend a classic; The Plum Pudding. Now, everybody knows that Plum Puddings don’t actually taste that nice, but part of the serving tradition is to set the whole thing on fire, which is awesome. Also, everybody will appreciate the pudding a little more because they subconsciously know how badly this could have went under your supervision, and are all secretly just glad that they’re not on fire. And isn’t that what Christmas is all about? Not being on fire?
Step 3: Post Dinner Stupor
There’s only so much butter-smothered potato the human body can handle, and you exceeded that limit some time ago. So far your attempts to cleanse your digestive tract with a cunning concoction of brandy, eggnog and alkaseltzer have only resulted in deliciousness and a twelve to fifteen percent increase in jolliness. Soon will come the time of the ceremonial Christmas Dump, but in the meantime you must submit to The Time of the Stupor.
Think of this as a great time to bond with your grandpa. Simply stick an appropriate Christmas themed movie on the idiot box (again, all relevant Die Hards should be fine) and see if you can match the finely honed snoring rhythm of your elderly counterpart. Soon you will know the absolute bliss of a festive total shutdown, awakening just in time for a screaming bowel emergency.
Step 4: The Games
Christmas is also the one time of year when everybody pretends that board-games are fun and still relevant, so its time to dust of your Monopoly set, retrieve the pieces from the fireplace where they were scattered after The Unpleasantness last year, and prepare for an evening of family fun and rage!
A few tips for anybody yet to perfect their Monopoly technique:
- Be the banker. If you’re good at stealing without anybody realizing (just like real bankers!) then you’re onto a winner. If you get caught just tell everybody that you’re transferring funds to your investment arm.
- You probably want to be the car so that you can make vrooming noises while you move your piece along. I understand, but you should know that being the cannon means that you get to explode the car.
- No game of Monopoly is complete unless somebody says; “Hey guys- imagine if all this monopoly money was real money! Wouldn’t that be awesome? Guys! Guuuuyss!!”
- If you don’t win, be sure to point out that Monopoly is a game of chance that has nothing to do with the business acumen of the players involved.
- If you do win, make sure you roll around in your pile of money while screaming that you are the next Richard Branson.
- Nobody every really wins in Monopoly. Most games just end with somebody saying “Screw this.” and then sulking for the rest of the evening. That somebody could be you!
We’re done with boardgames now. We need not speak of them again ‘til next year. Now stop punching your uncle and lets move along.
Step 5: Booze!
By now you should have been taking full advantage of the fact that you’ve been drinking since mid-morning and nobody is staging an intervention. Thankfully a dinner beyond the musings of mere gluttony should have fortified you with further drinking capacity. Or killed you. Presuming it’s the former, you can now look forward to experimenting with drinks that you wouldn’t normally contemplate at any other time of the year. Brandy, Port, Brandy and Port, That Sticky Stuff That’s Been In The Pantry Since Last Year–it’s time to squeeze a cavalcade of questionable spirits down your festive face-hole. And best of all? Christmas makes everything more acceptable! You’re not boorish; you’re jolly. You’re not stumbling; you’re merry. You’re not throwing up all over everything–you’re simply overflowing with festive cheer. So drink up and don’t stop drinking until “Good Will To All Men” becomes a strangled death-rattle in your throat.
Step 6: Party!
Ah, those classic Christmas songs. How you loath them. And justifiably so, because–lets face it–they’re all terrible. Except on Christmas day, when they magically become sweet treacle for the ears. It’s the same with pseudo-amusing party hats and terrible sweaters; all of a sudden they are both wonderful and not at all ghastly. The transformation has begun. You are become Christmas, and it is time to party.
Filled with the spirit of the season, and probably bacon, you will laugh with those you rarely laugh with, dance with those you thought would never dance, and wake up with those you were convinced were straight. For in defiance of the winter dark, and against the weight of a year of toil, you, like your ancestors before you, will stave off the bleakness of the universe with the inner light of your better angel. Against the staggering evidence to the contrary, for a short time you will feel there is hope for all mankind, whether you’re observing Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Diwali or whatever the hell it is you Canadians do with your time.
So make the most of it, because you won’t have an excuse to feel like this for a long time. At least not until New Years Eve anyway.
And while we’re on the subject of celebrations, why not prepare yourself for the inevitable fallout by reading about The Five Worst Things About Your Hangover.