This season brings out the best and worst in people. And with all the rushing, incidents occur, accidents happen. We had cake and ice cream for a granddaughter’s birthday this past Sunday. Smokey, the dog, ecstatic to have so many kids to play with, wagged his tail so much it should have wiggled off. Unfortunately, when I suffer sleep deprivation –and sleep is in short supply when teenagers overnight with you– anything and everything is funny to the point hysterical, debilitating laughter. Once I start laughing, I’m useless.
Breanne loves icing, so as honoree, she got the corner chunk of cake piled high with hot pink roses, white, purple and leaf green frosting. Her mistake? She set it down on the coffee table to fix a glass of tea. Smokey danced around and around the table wagging his tail — back and forth in the mass of frosting, turning the final four inches of his tail into a frosting brush. I tried to call out a warning and snorted frosting and cake crumbs down my throat. In the ensuing coughing fit I could only point and laugh hysterically as I followed the chorus of “Heys!” and “Aw, man‘s!” and “What the–?’s” as he made the rounds of guests, tail a-wagging, painting everyone’s shins with colorful frosting stripes. His tail was wagging so hard he even dotted his own sides. Some one shoved a glass of tea in my hand, but the sight of my daughter bent double in a crouch, hands outstretched chasing an ever just-out-of-reach Smokey through the house with a wet paper towel set me off again. He’s currently a punk rocker dog with his dyed tail and polka dots.
The next incident is sad and funny. My cousin was leaving for an early appointment when she backed over the family kitten. (If it had to go, at least it was quick!) Upset, she didn’t have time to bury it, yet didn’t want to leave it for the kids to find. Too traumatizing. So she dug one of her son’s old sweatshirts out the back of the car, slid the expired kitten onto it and bundled it up. There was a paper bag in the car so she put the whole thing in it and rolled down the top, intending to bury it when she got back home.
She went to her appointment, then to do a little Christmas shopping at the Mall. She unlocked the back door of her vehicle to set her double armful of bags inside when she spotted the bag with the kitten. She set her shopping bags at her feet and gingerly lifted the paper bag and set it on the trunk until she got everything loaded.
While she was leaned into the backseat a rather large woman walked by and swiped the bag off the trunk. When cuz straightened up and hollered a warning at her, the woman took off running into the parking lot with her stolen treasure. Cuz shrugged and went back to loading the rest of her packages. About ninety seconds later a blood-curdling scream sounded from deep among the parked cars.
That evening the kids were told the truth about their missing kitten: a big, mean woman stole her. Mama saw her run off with her.
But more importantly, this story is proof there really is a Santa Claus. Good children get toys under the Christmas tree. Naughty children get switches and lumps of coal in their stockings.
Really nasty people? Santa gives them dead-kitty-in-a-sack.