Hump Day: Nativity scene ‘occupied,’ stock futures plummet

Hump Day

Hump Day
By Brian Cormier
Wednesday, Dec. 14, 2011
Moncton Times & Transcript
Editorial section

Apparently, my cute-as-a-button little white dog is an atheist.

The other day, when visiting my father at his seniors’ residence, Milane (the otherwise most perfect and intelligent dog in the world) ran right up to the large nativity set up for Christmas outside.

Then, she took one look at Baby Jesus and growled her little brains out.

Oh great!

So much for Santa coming to my house this year!

When your dog growls at Baby Jesus, that’s pretty much a sign from above that the only thing you’re getting for Christmas is whatever comes out of Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer after Santa holds him over your chimney on Christmas Eve and squeezes really hard.

I tried to be good all year.

I tried not to lose my temper at all the road construction going on around my house.

OK, maybe not always successfully, but at least I tried!

If there was a little old lady who needed to cross the street, I’d slam on my breaks, get out of my car and walk her across.

Even if she didn’t need to cross the street, I’d toss her across anyway just in case.

I’m sure at some point she would have needed to go.

I didn’t cheat on my taxes.

I declared all my income right down to the change I found beneath and between the sofa cushions.

Oddly, Revenue Canada doesn’t have a line on our annual tax returns for ‘sofa income.’

I recycled. I brought back all my returnable beverage containers.

I recycled my used batteries. I composted.

I brushed my teeth and changed my underwear on a regular basis.

I mean, c’mon, for a man, I was doing pretty good there, wasn’t I?

But then a little white dog walked up to one of Heaven’s head honchos and growled.

Lovely. Just lovely.

I know that’s going on my file.

When I arrive in heaven and St. Peter meets me at the front desk, I just know he’s going to be looking through that big book of my life and smile and nod and smile and nod some more and then do it again until his eyes pop open, his jaw drops and he starts muttering, “Growled? At Baby Jesus? At Christmas?”

And then the “Tsk tsks!” would start with the head going back and forth as if to motion the word “No!”

Lucky for me, though, I already have my lies, oops I mean my excuses already written out.

I’d put on my biggest fake Grinch-like smile – you know, that same smile shown every year on TV when he comes up with his diabolical plot against the Whos in Whoville – and look at St. Peter and just say:

“She just thought he was another dog. It was an honest mistake.”

Then I’d punch him good-naturedly on the side of the arm to try to make him chuckle.

Yup, that’s what I’d do.

And then I’d be relegated to the part of Heaven that houses Canadian hockey fans who won’t rest until another team from Great White North wins a Stanley Cup. Whenever a Canadian team scores a goal, there are a whole lot of Hallelujahs and Amens, but mostly they just cry a lot.

That’s why it’s been raining so much lately.

What does one to admonish a dog for making a social faux pas like this?

And this just wasn’t any run-of-the social gaffe like drinking from your finger bowl at a fancy dinner party, accidentally using your tie as a napkin (been there, done that!) or choosing the one bathroom stall with no toilet paper?

So anyway, I highly doubt St. Peter would be much interested in my tales of woefully pitiful excuses about why my dog growled at Baby Jesus.

To be fair, Baby Jesus didn’t seem to mind.

Sure, he was made of concrete, but still – it’s not as if the statue came to life to throw lightning bolts at Milane.

In the end, I’ll just have to tread softly over the next few weeks and sing extra joyfully at church during the holidays – if I ever make it back to church, that is.

I haven’t been there in so long that I’m pretty sure the holy water is going to boil as soon as I walk past it down the aisle to the pew.

Yeah, it’s been that long!

I hope it was just all a silly misunderstanding and perhaps my dog thought Baby Jesus was just lying in her bed.

She’s very protective of her bed.

Sure, that’s it.

I’ll just laugh it off with St. Peter and we’ll have a big ol’ chuckle about the whole incident.

That is until he sends me back down to Earth as a ghost to haunt people who drive down streets in December with their windows down and blasting their music so loudly that the base shakes the windows in my house.

Actually, I wouldn’t mind doing that!

Oh yeah, that would be a great job, wouldn’t it?

I’d be really good at it.

I’d scare them real good.

They’d have to revert to adult diapers for a few weeks just to get back their bearings.

It wouldn’t take much to scare them, just give them a book on etiquette.

They’re eyes would probably catch in flames.

Santa Claus, if you’re reading this and I know you are, please put in a good word for me with everyone and anyone involved with Christmas in any official capacity.

While my dog’s momentary rudeness may not win her any prizes for politeness, I hope you’ll spare her.

Heaven would be a terribly lonely place with no dogs.

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