Just forget the words and sing along

Monday, December 27, 2004

I'm back from Christmas break! Went down to Red Deer to hang with the family. And that's why there's no column this week. Didn't right anything before I left, didn't feel like writing anything when I got home tonight. I think you'll live.

Now, I know I said I'd never talk about my family in the columns or in this here blog or anything like that, but this is just too good a story to not share.

As you all know, the one thing I really, really wanted for Christmas was the Spider-Man 2 DVD. I've been dropping subtle hints since August. Well, only if you consider putting up big, bold banners "subtle." When Spider-Man 2 finally came out back on November 30, that's when I tripled my "subtle" hints.

And about two weeks ago, Mom started dropping her own subtle hints. She started going on and on about how she didn't want to buy me DVDs for gifts anymore. Between widescreen, fullscreen, extended editions, and unrated director's cuts, she just has no idea anymore which one is the "right" one. I tried to put her mind at ease. "Just look for those two words - wide screen - and I'll be happy," I said.

And the countdown to Christmas continued, me with my subtle hints that all I wanted was Spider-Man 2, and Mom with her ramblings about how she refused to buy me DVDs.

Christmas morning came. I grabbed the box from my parents. It was about the right size for a DVD. I tore it open and found...a box of chocolates. I thought, "Maybe Mom just used an empty box," but no. A quick look at the underside showed the factory seals were still intact. A quick shake and I heard a very recognizable rattle. It was a box of chocolates. I felt somewhat letdown, as it was the only DVD-sized box under the tree for me, meaning it was clear what happened: no Spider-Man 2 for me. I was then directed towards a second box from my parents, which contained a Future Shop gift card. The meaning was clear: here's the money to buy the DVD you want. The box of chocolates is just for the thrill of opening something on Christmas morning.

But still, that didn't stop me from being whiney all day Christmas. I lamented that I didn't get what I really wanted - Spider-Man 2 - and everyone was stunned. (As I said, I layed the subtle hints on pretty heavy.) Mom just smiled and nodded in her sympathetic, maternal way.

Boxing Day came. My brother and sister-in-law were off to spend their Christmas cash, and I went along. We went to Future Shop, where I promplty grabbed Spider-Man 2 off the shelf and spent my gift card on it. My brother and sister-in-law bought a new printer, a new digital camera, wireless controllers for his PS2, a new exercise bike, etc.

We got back to my brother's place, and we unloaded all of his packages. When all that was done, Mom turned to me and said, "And let me guess...you spent all your money, too." Feeling somewhat proud, I said, "Nope. There was only one thing on my list, and it's the only thing I got: Spider-Man 2."

Mom's Christmas cheer gave way to sheer rage. "What the hell was wrong the the DVD I gave you?" she demanded. Somewhat taken aback, I gently reminded my mother that she didn't give me a DVD. She gave me the gift card and a box of chocolates. "You should have opened the fucking box," she said as she stormed off.

Naturally, I went to the Christmas tree and took a second look at the box of chocolates my parents gave me. Upon a closer, Gil Grisson-style investigation, I noticed that the factory seals had been gently pieced back together and taped up. I cut the tape and opened the box. Inside, were a handful of chocolates to give the box a "box of chocolates" rattle...

...and Spider-Man 2 on DVD.

Mom didn't talk to me for the rest of the afternoon, thinking that I had snubbed her and implied the gift wasn't good enough. I didn't talk to Mom for the rest of the day, because I felt that she played a very cruel Chrismtas joke on me.

Anyway, it seems that we're both over it now. Probably on Wednesday or Thursday, I'll head into the city and return the Spider-Man 2 DVD that I bought. The only question now is, what trilogy should I blow my gift card on: Lord of the Rings or the Matrix?

Next Issue...Turning into the Grinch

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