Yep it's that time of year again. If you're over 30 or so, it might be time for a little reality check.
Time for getting gifts and giving money to necessary people (like doormen, building supers, the newspaper guy, babysitters, teachers, secretaries, business associates) - ka-ching, ka-ching - before you spend a dime on your family and friends. Time for obligatory office parties, awkward group holiday functions, and forced family get-togethers.
On the home front, the kids are anxious about the latest toy or gadget they've got to have, but the stores are sold out of them. Your clothes are getting tighter (mine are, anyway). Airlines have jacked up their prices so travel is prohibitive, even if TSA weren't so obnoxious (gotta love them pat-downs and full body scans). Midnight madness and Cyber Monday are already history and nothing's on sale right now. And gas prices are on the rise- on CNBC, they're predicting oil will soon reach $100 a barrel again.
So much complaining is tough to take any time of year, especially around now. But unless you can get over to Radio City and get a little Rockette holiday spirit - and the amazing Rockettes do cheer up almost any Scrooge - the holidays can be rough going even for the perkiest of souls.
In the divorce biz, come, oh, say January 4 or so, after the kids are back in school, the phones start jangling. A combination of holiday hassles (see above), the presents were crummy, the trip to Aruba stunk, the credit cards are maxxed out, the Christmas bonus didn't come through, and s/he has been staying in hotels with someone else. Among other things.
An entry in Divorce Saloon yesterday notes the historical uptick of divorces in January. http://www.divorcesaloon.com/2010/12/02/should-you-ever-ask-for-a-divorce-in-december/ So true. And for so many reasons - including, and maybe especially, because the crappy Christmas gift was the last straw.
But to the rest of you - and even to you, Mr. and Mrs. Grinch - I truly hope you will enjoy the holidays. Because it is the time of year to open our hearts to each other. Or to someone, anyone, even if it's not your spouse. And we're alive and on this earth, regardless of whether we're all 100% physically, emotionally or psychologically healthy.
I'll be doing a sing-in of Handel's Messiah again this year. The music never ceases to stir my soul. Lift up your heads, O ye gates....