Laurie Toby Edison

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Body Impolitic’s Annual Guide to Sane Holidays

Laurie and Debbie say:

If you love the holidays, love your family, and are looking forward to the next ten days, you don’t need this list.

If you’re still reading:

1) To the extent possible, do as much or as little holiday stuff as you want; it’s supposed to a celebration, not an obligation.
2) Eat what you enjoy. Desserts are not sinful, they’re just desserts. If other people want to tell you what to eat or not to eat, that’s their problem.
3) Wear what you think you look terrific in.
4) Spend time with people you love and who are good to you.
5) If you must spend time with awful people, remind yourself three times (out loud) before you walk in the door that they are awful people. Then do something really nice for yourself the minute you can walk out the door.
6) Plan your responses to inevitable comments beforehand. For example, if you know that your mother will overfeed you and then, just as dessert is being cleared off the table, say “You look like you’ve gained weight,” try, “That was really a fabulous meal. Excuse me, I haven’t had a minute to talk with Aunt Catherine.”
7) If the holidays make you sad, or you just hate them, you’re not alone. Participate as little as possible. They’ll be over soon.
8) If you enjoy the kids, they’re a great escape from the adult follies. If they drive you crazy, be as patient with them as you can: they didn’t overstimulate themselves with sugar and toys–they had help.
9) You have a right to enjoy things in your own way.
10) Be effusive about every gift you get; then be rude about the awful ones later to your friends. If they’re really awful, throw them off a bridge in the middle of the night.

If these aren’t your holidays, have a great Chinese meal and enjoy the movie!

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9 Responses to “Body Impolitic’s Annual Guide to Sane Holidays”

  1. Andi Says:

    Thank yoooooooooou!!!!!!!

    xoxoxoxo

  2. littlem Says:

    So sweet. Thank you.

    3 additional tips (which I’d bet you already know):

    HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS – Holly Hunter, Anne Bancroft, Charles Durning, Robert Downey Jr. (his usually sexy scandalous self, but WORSE), Dermot Mulroney. Directed by Jodie Foster.

    THE RE – Kevin Spacey, Judy Davis, Denis Leary. (Laughing already, aren’t you?)

    SCROOGED – Bill Murray, Bobcat Goldthwait prefreakout. (Bonus points if you get all the musicians doing a cameo in the early scene. Hint: They’re filming on B’way and W. 52nd street.)

    Put DVD player on repeat. Uncork Veuve, eggnog, or Glenlivet.
    Enjoy.

    Happy Holidays, y’all.

  3. littlem Says:

    So sweet. Thank you.

    3 additional tips (which I’d bet you already know):

    HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS – Holly Hunter, Anne Bancroft, Charles Durning, Robert Downey Jr. (his usually sexy scandalous self, but WORSE), Dermot Mulroney. Directed by Jodie Foster.

    THE REF – Kevin Spacey, Judy Davis, Denis Leary. (Laughing already, aren’t you?)

    SCROOGED – Bill Murray, Bobcat Goldthwait prefreakout. (Bonus points if you get all the musicians doing a cameo in the early scene. Hint: They’re filming on B’way and W. 52nd street.)

    Put DVD player on repeat. Uncork Veuve, eggnog, or Glenlivet.
    Enjoy.

    Happy Holidays, y’all.

  4. RW Says:

    Thanks!
    That helped a lot this morning.

    Can I add another tip please… Celebrate something else, using your own rules. For instance celebrate ‘longest night’. Think of a ritual to perform. One of the best years was when I went with a friend and camped out in the middle of nowhere beside some standing stones in a tent, just for the sake of it. Luckily we took plenty of clothes because it was very cold – but incredibly beautiful next morning.

  5. susan senator Says:

    Thank you for this list. I actually enjoy going to my in-laws for the holiday, but that took some growth, on both sides.

    In general, with difficult people, sometimes it just helps to say to myself, “oh, yeah, that’s that flaw i discovered! there it is, in all its gory!” and “oh, there it is again!” If you can wink to someone else who gets it, across the room, even if it’s just yourself in a mirror, that goes a long, long way!

  6. Kat Says:

    Great guide! I needed that this morning too.

    Started getting the bah humbugs over the weekend. Just reading your guide improved the old mood a little.
    Thanks:)

  7. Corinna Says:

    Brilliant!

  8. JeanC Says:

    Great guide for the holidays. We keep it low key as hubby doesn’t do Christmas, but he lets me decorate to my hearts content as he does like the sparklies and the lights. We celebrate Yule with friends and stay home and watch movies on the 25th.

    I’m thinking duck for Christmas if the budget works out and a totally to die for apple butter pumpkin pie for dessert, with whipped topping made with real cream, life is too short for fake whipped cream :D

  9. Anna Feruglio Dal Dan Says:

    Strangely enough, hands down the most awful person at my Christmas dinner today (long story) as a two and half year old. She had plenty of help in turning form an adorable smiling happy baby into a self-centered unlovable monster of selfishness and lack of ego boundaries prone to fit of raging frustration if any of her desires where not instantly met (they were), but explanations are one thing and results another. Within about ten minutes of her coming in, screaming and refusing to look anybody in the eye, I was enormously happy I had not sprung for the super-expensive present I had thought to buy and decided that I while I was bound to protect and respect a child I had no obligation to like her, or to pay any notice to her since she wasn’t paying any to me.

    I spent the day talking quite happily with the Other, childless couple, who were very grateful that somebody was finally paying some attention to them, and ate a lot of splendid food.

    I hope the child is going to grow out of it, in twenty or thirty years time. Meanwhile, I have plenty of lovable people to spend my money on.

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