Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Chestnuts Roasting On An Open Meme...

Another one of these danged intrusive lists of questions, designed to turn us all into whiny liberal bare-your-souls types. Bah, humbug! (And yet I do it....odd how that works.)

1. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate? Hot chocolate is OK, but good nog beats everything.

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree? Only heathens have unwrapped presents.

3. Colored lights on tree/house or white? I prefer white, as does The Wife. I always have to string the lights on my mother's tree as well, though (since I'm a persnickety perfectionist, so I'm the one who does it best), and she has colored lights. So I get to do both.

4. Do you hang mistletoe? No

5. When do you put your decorations up? Depends on when we get the tree -- when we used to get a "regular" tree, it usually sat outside for a week in a bucket of water, which pushed decorating close to Christmas. The last couple of years (and again this year, I think), we've gone out and cut down our own tree, and then it goes into the stand as soon as we get it home -- and gets decorated as soon as it settles, which is usually a day later.

6. What is your favorite holiday dish (excluding dessert)? My mother makes something she calls "Christmas Apples," which are a hot baked, pastry-encrusted breakfast thing. They're wonderful.

7. Favorite Holiday memory as a child: I have a horrible memory for my own past, so I can't say. I don't really remember my childhood as such, though I'm sure I had one.

8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa? I'm pretty sure I twigged early, but I have no solid memory.

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve? We used to, especially back before kids, when we'd all go to my mother's house for Christmas Eve. But not these days, since the adults get only a present or two, and you don't want to waste them early.

10. How do you decorate your Christmas Tree? Piles and piles of random stuff, from really expensive ornaments to paper Rescue Hero cut-outs and a plastic keychain of Matthew Vassar that was a giveaway at college. Pretty much everything has a story, so trimming the tree takes quite a while, and gets very self-indulgent.

11. Snow! Love it or dread it? I have to shovel it, and it doesn't keep me from having to work...but I still generally like it more than I don't.

12. Can you ice skate? Never been on skates.

13. Do you remember your favorite gift? I got a black trenchcoat one year that was exactly what I wanted. (I'm still wearing the second generation of that gift -- once I find something I like, I tend to get precisely the same thing over and over again.)

14. What's the most important thing about the Holidays for you? The whole spirit of the time makes me happy; I'm not generally a happy person, so that's a nice change.

15. What is your favorite Holiday Dessert? Pecan pie.

16. What is your favorite holiday tradition? We've done a gift-swap thing with wrapped large chocolate bars for about a decade now -- everybody gets a random number out of a hat, and we go in that order, either unwrapping a new one or "stealing" a bar from someone else -- and, when it works well, it's an amazingly good time. (Trimming the tree is also nice.)

17. What tops your tree? A silver plastic fold-out thing that I think came out of an Absolut ad several years back -- it's shiny and full of cut-outs and looks like a really nice star (but also folds down flat).

18. Which do you prefer giving or receiving? Giving; it's rare for someone to get me something I really like. (And I used to be really good at getting great gifts for people, back when I had more time.)

19. What is your favorite Christmas Song(s)? "Merry Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)" by U2. I'm a sucker for sad rock n' roll.

20. Candy Canes! yuck or yummy? They taste fine, but in my family they're nearly purely decorative -- most of the ones on my mother's tree date back to the first Bush administration (Bush senior), and are no longer in the category of edible things.

21. Fave Christmas Movie? Love, Actually

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