Thursday, December 1, 2011

The First Item on My Christmas List

It's December 1st, which means I can start thinking about Christmas. I don't do Christmas in November. That's bullshit. Seriously, people, you're buying into the corporate consumerist marketing mindset.
I have plenty of time to get in all my favorite rants about Christmas. (Preview: YOU'RE ALL DOING IT WRONG! WRONG!!!) Basically, though, I just don't have time to think about Christmas prior to December 1st. My brain won't hold that much stuff, either.

Be that as it may, since it is in fact the first day of December, I can start thinking about important presents. Let's not be hypocrites: if it weren't for having to give gifts to people you spend most of the year not even thinking about, Christmas would be a cakewalk. It would be all decorating and baking and going to parties and dressing up and sleeping late. That stuff is fun. Even going to Mass is fun on Christmas, because the church is made up beautifully and everyone sings the good carols (you know, the ones that are actually about Jesus) and no one cares who can and can't hold a tune. And there's no crucifixion scene - Palm Sunday, I love you, but no one likes to see their Savior nailed to a cross. It's unpleasant. Christmas is all about babies and camels and sharp-dressed dudes bringing presents.

On camels. Hell, yeah.
Where was I? Right, presents. Buying shit and giving it to people has become the reason for the season, at least if you watch the commercials. I freely admit that I find gift-giving excessively stressful. It's expensive, it's time-consuming, and everybody judges you. Not that I don't love giving gifts, especially to the people I care most about. It's just that it's expensive, it's time-consuming, and everybody judges you.

Nonetheless, I will give Christmas gifts to the people I love, and they will give me gifts, as well. Don't even try to play the game of chicken that is "Now remember, no presents." I've killed more brain cells than I can comfortably spare trying to outguess people who promised not to get me anything and then showed up with "just a little thing that I really wanted you to have." Right.

It's nothing, really. I got it on sale.
 Anyway, if I'm going to get presents, then I'm going to be a helpful little drunk and give hints to those who might want them. So if you're inclined to get me a gift, keep in mind that I will gratefully accept and truly appreciate your soy candles, warm scarves, flavored coffees, and sweaters. If you care enough about me to give me anything (that doesn't have to be treated with antibiotics), I'll love it. Especially if it contains alcohol. But if you really want to know what's on my heart's-desire wish list, here goes.

The first item on my list is a hand-made oil painting reproduction of Edmund Bristow's "Before the Monkey Duel."

In case you missed it all the other times I've mentioned it.
 That's right, some starving artist locked in a basement (perhaps even a monkey, right next to the ones banging out Shakespeare on typewriters) will hand-paint an original copy of this masterwork for you. Like, on canvas and everything. All you have to do is slap it in a frame and tell your baffled guests that you bought it at auction for a million dollars. Because it will look that authentic.

A 36x48 genuine fake really painted copy of "Before the Monkey Duel" costs only $455.09. Which is a hell of a deal if you were willing to drop a mil on the original article. Note that you can order smaller sizes for an even lower price. But if any image deserves to be showcased on a full four-foot-wide canvas, it's this, my very favorite piece of singerie. I mean, really, three words: Monkeys with guns.

Everyone can enjoy that.
 So that's the first item on my list. There will be more in future posts. But until then, remember that Snickers Peanut Butter Squared is always an appropriate gift.

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