Hump Day: Use the 40 gold rings to pay for cleaning up after the 40 cows

Hump DayHump Day
By Brian Cormier
Wednesday, Dec. 24, 2014
Moncton Times & Transcript

We’ve been hearing its roar for months. We winced as it got closer and closer. Some of us covered our ears, not wanting to believe the ever-increasing sound levels of the music and bells. We covered our eyes not wanting to see the lights and shiny baubles strewn all over the place. No, despite our complaining about it, we couldn’t stop that approaching freight train called Christmas.

Yes, Christmas is here. It’s sitting on your front doorstep and it’s not going anywhere until you let it inside. If you aren’t ready by now, you never will be. Either you need to wave the white flag and surrender if you didn’t get everything done or declare complete victory over all the hustle and bustle if you managed to make Martha Stewart look like a disorganized, forgetful, persnickety perfectionist who should hang up her apron in shame.

By now, if someone asks you if you’re ready for Christmas, you’d better say ‘yes’ unless you plan on spending the next few days in a straitjacket as you watch how others are celebrating with hors d’oeuvres, baked holiday goodies, turkey, meat pies, poutines râpées, seafood and other delicious treats.

Regardless of the stress, we usually end up being ready for the big day, even if it means changes in plans. As the weeks ticked away, my glorious plans to put Martha Stewart to shame were whittled down one by one. The several dozen cookies became, well, zero dozen cookies. The house decorated so pristinely that Michelangelo would be jealous ended up being the same old decorations I’ve had for years. And the hand-crafted gifts that would trigger outbursts of tears from the recipients? Well, they’re going to have to do their crying over gift cards.

In the end, though, this stuff doesn’t matter. Sure, it’s nice to look at and the food is delicious. But really, it’s the people who count, right? As long as we have good family and friends around us, it’s all good. I’m also pretty sure that those who receive gifts from you will appreciate anything they get. And if they don’t, just throw a five-pound fruitcake through their front window.

I’m just thankful that I didn’t decide to compete with the gift giving in The 12 Days of Christmas song. According to my research,that would have meant 364 gifts to one single person over 12 days.

partridgeThis would equal a partridge in a pear tree every day for all days (12 partridges); two turtle doves for the last 11 days (22); three French hens for 10 days (30); four calling birds for nine days (36); five gold rings for eight days (40); six geese a-laying for seven days (42); seven swans a-swimming for six days (42); eight maids a-milking for five days (40); nine ladies dancing for four days (36); 10 lords a-leaping for three days (30); 11 pipers piping for two days (22); and finally 12 drummers drumming on the last day.

Could you even imagine the mess and noise from that donnybrook? First of all, that’s a grand total of 184 birds of various species, probably ones that don’t get along. So you just know there’d be a lot of squawking and feathers everywhere. And those eight maids are milking cows – so don’t forget the cows, who’ve probably stepped on all those eggs laid by the geese. And then there are the 34 pipers and drummers. That sounds fine for a Christmas parade, but in one little room during the holidays? If there’s a 13th day of Christmas, it had better come with earplugs.

And don’t even get me started on what ended up happening with the dancing ladies and leaping lords. Cover the children’s eyes! Have you no shame, ladies and lords? It’s Christmas, for goodness sake! What will Santa say when he comes down the chimney? Well, he probably won’t be saying much because he’ll join in with the elves in illegal betting on which swan will be the last survivor after 40 of them start fighting in the bathtub.

I hope the SPCA has extra staff on duty. It sounds like they’re going to have their jobs cut out for them if anyone actually takes that song to heart and tries to impress their sweetheart with some of the most impractical animal gifts anyone could ever give.

Fear not, however, because there are still those 40 gold rings, right? Well, the pawn shops open after the holidays and you can always sell them to hire a cleaning service for the mess. Something tells me you’re going to need it.

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