Your Little Piece of Heaven

With the holidays fast approaching and people bustling about, there’s a certain conviviality in the air. I’ve previously written about the feelings of stress or loneliness that can make themselves felt this time of year, but now I want to focus on the festive aspects. What’s your favorite part of all this hubbub? And, even more interesting, how has this changed over the years? What does this say about you?

 

It’s funny, isn’t it? When we were children, it was all about the presents. If I were to guess, I’d bet that this is no longer the part that thrills you as much. Personally, I love driving around at night, seeing homes illuminated with twinkling lights, imagining the good cheer manifesting within in. It feels… hopeful.

 

But aside from such images, when you think about it, what’s the first image that pops into your head when you think of a nice place to be? Who are you with? What are you doing? What are you feeling when you go to this place in your head? The answer you give today probably differs from the one you’d have ten years ago and is likely to change, again, ten years hence.

 

The conclusion to be drawn from this little exercise that I consider especially important is the that we’re continually changing, even when so much of who we are remains the same. These conundrums fascinate me. I am so much the way I have always been, but my view on life and my appreciation of what’s important has changed so much. Is this true for you as well? How do you think you’ve changed? Overall, are you pleased with your evolution?

 

I’m keeping this post short because it’s the holidays and you’ve got things to do, but I hope you’ll take a moment to reflect on this, reflect on how your answers have changed over time, and what all this reveals about the person you’ve become. Find the hope in your journey because it’s there, too. And if you need someone to point it out, I’m always here…

 

SOMETHING TOTALLY UNRELATED AND CYNICAL BUT I WROTE IT FOR FUN

MY HOLIDAY BREAK STARTS NOW—SEE YOU AGAIN IN 2015!

 

Riding Rudy’s Road: A Reindeer Reality Teaser

 

Strains of Jingle Bell Rock grow louder as Rudolph trots to the entrance marked “Break Room,” in faded red letters, pushing open the swinging doors with his antlers. He pauses, surveying his coworkers sprawled all over the beat up furniture, their hooves resting on white fur bellies. A Christmas Tree made of overturned red solo cups has been erected on a table in front of them.

 

Noisily draining his cup, Dasher emits a loud burp before flinging it at the discarded Toys for Tots box that doubles as a trash can. It hits the outside of the box, rolling across the glitter and paint spattered cement floor; a small trail of beer spills out.

 

Dasher!” Vixen whines. She scoots further away on the l-shaped sofa.

 

Come on, baby,” Dasher coaxes. “Don’t be stuck up. Let ol Dash give you a belly rub.

 

You’re so gross,” she replies, refluffing her chest fur. “Leave me alone.”

 

I’m right behind you every night, baby. We have no secrets.” He chuckles as she ignores him.

 

Comet canters past, silent with disapproval, and gingerly takes the dirty cup to the trash. Using a rag hanging near the Hoof Bath area, he mops up the spill, scrubbing vigorously.

 

Shrugging off the compulsory jingle bell harness, Rudolph clip clops to the keg for a an ice cold serving of Frosty’s Brew. He drains one and then another before pausing to scratch an itch. The others stare at him, inquiringly.

 

Rudy! Yo! So, how was it?” Cupid pants, looking up from his never ending series of TRX pull ups, a sheen of perspiration running down his flank. “I heard Petite Paula was your handler at the mall. Did she say anything about me?

 

Vixen shakes her head. “Bunch of steroided stags,” she mutters, crossing one hind leg over the other to inspect her hoof polish.

 

Forget Paula, how about Pretty Pete? He’s so dreamy,Prancer muses. “The way he strokes my legs with that brush before we start our night ride…” he drifts off, lost in thought.

 

Prancer’s identical twin Dancer nods in agreement, sighing as he checks Twitter for Pretty Pete Tweets. An Elf of the Month calendar hangs on the wall with previous months’ cheesecake pin ups haphazardly taped along the wall.

 

So, Ru, how was Nick’s mood?” Donder asks, taking a long drag on his e-cig. “Is he still being a little bitch about that wrong turn?”

 

It’ll blow over,” Rudolph replies, unscrewing his red nose and depositing it on the table. He rubs a sore spot where the artificially enhanced apparatus chafed his fur.

 

The guy’s on the rag,” Dancer declares. “Has been for 300 years. What a dick. Glad he’s not one of ours.” Prancer makes an approving sound.

 

It’s just that he’s stressed,” Blitzen counters in a heavy German accent, removing a piece of straw from his mouth to talk. “You don’t understand what it’s like to be responsible for a deadline. Bunch of fawns.”

 

Shut up, Blitz,” Cupid responds, seguing into squats. “We were late one time, ONE FUCKING TIME and you two have never gotten over it. One more crack like that and I’m gonna muzzle you.”

 

Yeah, you and what army of doped up goons?” Blitzen snaps, his eyes bulging. “You’re nothing but a piece of over baked meat. Coming to a Wal-Mart near you,” he announces in a fake American accent, “raw hide jerky for your dogs.”

 

The two reindeer scramble across the floor, preparing to do battle with their front legs. The clattering of angry hooves echoes against the cinder block walls.

 

Aaaack!” Dancer screams, hoofs flailing above his head, as their scuffle knocks over his solo cup Christmas Tree. “It took a lot of work to build that!” Rudolph’s nose rolls under the couch.

 

Dancer starts pawing to retrieve the glowing nose, but it rolls further under the couch. “Leave it,” Rudolph tells him. “Doesn’t matter.”

 

After Blitzen uses his antlers to poke Cupid in the balls, a painful scream fills the air. Vixen covers her ears with her front hooves, as she trots to the other side of the staff lounge to get beyond the fray.

 

Hey!” roars Donder, slamming his e-cig on the solo cup strewn table. “Enough of this!” He and Dasher work to separate the pair. The senior deer looks over at Prancer, “A little help here would be nice,” he yells. Jingle bells go flying.

 

Prancer rolls his eyes at his twin before leaping over the sofa to pin Cupid against the wall. Donder struggles to untangle his antlers from Cupid’s. Dasher mutters “Fucking Nazi” as he sits on Blitzen’s butt. The German reindeer flails his hooves in vain. Enjoying the spectacle, Dancer hums along to Jingle Bell Rock.

 

Just then, Santa strolls into the Lounge, trailed closely by three or four elves dressed in miniature Santa suits. On the back of each is bedazzled “Santa’s Little Helpers.” Displeased by the chaos, he roars, “STOP!” Everyone freezes, waiting to see what he’ll do next. He steps over the heap of panting combatants as he heads to the keg. “Bunch of lunk heads at it again.” He glowers at Cupid unsympathetically, “Oh, quit your groaning, Cue ball. Try growing a pair.”

 

It’s under control, Nick,” Donder assures him, letting Cupid go. “They’re just bucks.”

 

His boss exchanges meaningful looks with the shift supervisor. “Ok.” Clearing his throat, he surveys the room with steely blue eyes. “Paula, my list please.”

 

The comely elf scurries over, handing him a scroll with a solicitous smile. “Of course, Nick. Is there anything else you need?

 

Just your good will,” he replies, stroking her blonde head. “You look so pretty as Miss December,” he comments, pointing to the calendar.

 

Vixen snorts.

Solo Christmas

 

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