Inner Elf

Good tree but where do we put the kids?

          It is Monday of a crazy week in the CoupleDumb. And we really mean crazy because this week’s theme is losing your mind. We’re not talking about the clinical slow slip into dementia kind of insanity but the kind that takes you because you have just chosen to abandon your senses and give into a moment of cuckoo. Whether it is a moment of fun like shooting someone in the ear with a spit wad or a curse filled tirade at the slow driver in front of us, we all have those times when the doors of our little inner asylum are thrown open and all hell breaks loose.


          Paul says: I love Christmas. I don’t just like it in small pieces. From the birth of a Savior to rampant commercialism, I love it all. I love the debate over whether or not to say Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays. I love getting pissed over the ignorance of the ‘Christ is the reason for the season’ bumper stickers. I love the insipid, saccharine music. Yes, I love it all.

          When it comes to Christmas, I have definitely lost my marbles. But in a good way. Not like the Joker but more like Scrooge at the end of the movie. By September, Lee and I are done with our Christmas shopping. That right there has two-thirds of our audience saying that we are bugfuck. We do this because there is so very much more insanity to cover starting November 1st when we pull down decorations and attack the house with yuletide savagery. By the time that we are done, our house looks like Santa has personally come down from the North Pole to vomit his Christmas cheer all over our house, kind of like a wino drinking Goldschlager.

          It is during this time of year that my inner child gets to walk hand in hand with my outer adult. In the past twenty or so years that we have been talking about the inner child, there has always been a hippy-like assumption that we would like to allow the little scamp to roam free, at least in popular culture. ‘Wouldn’t it be nice if we could all be like children?’ Well…no. I want my stockbroker’s inner child locked away like Sybil.  My doctor’s inner child better be treated like it was the mutant love child of him and his sister/mother.


          But there are some times when we want to tap into that childlike glee and these are the good moments of insanity that we allow ourselves. Our first year together, Lee and I lived in a teeny tiny apartment. We bought a Christmas tree that was eight feet tall and seven feet wide. We needed to bend the top of the tree and forgo the use of one sofa but we got that tree in the apartment. And when people would look at us like we were insane, we would say ‘fuck you and get off of our patio’ since they really couldn’t fit in the apartment because of the tree. And we would laugh.


          It is important to allow little inner Paul to roam and just as important for him to know his place. The flip side of our Christmas nutterness is that by December 27th all decorations are down and stored and my inner elf is again entombed for another ten months. Usually by June I can hear him scraping at my consciousness and singing ‘We wish you a Merry Christmas’ in my soul. Kind of like the Omen but with tinsel.


          Lee says: I think we came together over the love of the season. It is infectious. In our world, anything seen to be outside the norm is considered craziness. If you stray from the path, you are a nutball. What about innocence? What about tapping into that inner abandon like when we were kids and had no inhibitions while pretending we were rock stars doing a concert in our bedroom while holding a hairbrush? Sure we kept doing this as adults but we do it in private. Now, as adults, we can play like this again and call it a game. Rock Band isn’t what the kids want under the tree this year but Mommy sure as hell needs the Beatles Rock Band.


          It’s sad really. Part of growing up is letting that innocence go and we are quickly snapped back into line when we try to show any playfulness. Not us. Tis’ the season where I support my 6 foot elf by agreeing that the house could use another 10,000 lights and the tree seems weak if it doesn’t scrape our 14 foot ceilings. If you don’t like it, fuck you and stay off our porch.

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