What’s Valentine’s Day all about? Ripping out your heart, zombie-style, of course!

It’s Valentine’s Day.

Again.

But I have an awesome boyfriend this year! Suck it, single people! This is the best day of my life!


No, not really. THIS was the best day of my life.

Sigh (of happiness).

But I know you don’t read this blog to hear how much better my life is than yours, (which let’s face it, prior to THIS, it wasn’t. Now it is. Unequivocally. Sorry.) so I’ll go back to being the Grinch Who Stole Valentine’s Day just for you, my loyal readers, who love the snark.

To be fair, my boyfriend is a former tree-hugging hippie who used to live in the mountains, have a beard, and grow his own vegetables. In fact, if you put some aviators on him in his old pictures, he might have been the Unabomber. Minus that whole letter bomb thing.

But the point is that he doesn’t like the idea of a commercialized holiday like Valentine’s Day, so we celebrated yesterday, which was our four-month anniversary. So unless he pulls a Kaiser Soze-style trick today and surprises me with flowers/candy/a giant teddy bear/other random crap that Hallmark tells me I need even though I don’t, I, as usual, have nothing to celebrate today.

Meaning it’s time to trash the hell out of the holiday.

So who was this mysterious St. Valentine and why do we have to celebrate him? As always, when I don’t know the answer to a question, I follow six simple steps to ensure that I arrive at the correct answer.

Step 1: Ask my dad. He knows all. He’s like the Oracle at Delphi, except he explains things in cryptic physics terms instead of cryptic riddles. So you’re more likely to wind up making something explode, less likely to commit patricide and incest, then gouge your eyes out when you ask him a question.

Step 2: Ask Siri. Why? Because my phone is always in my hand and it’s easier than typing a question into Google. Duh.

Step 3: Ask my grandma. She doesn’t usually know the answers, but she’ll always lie and make up a good story, which is usually more interesting than the real version anyway.

Step 4: Bang my head against the wall because my grandma’s answer made ZERO sense and she guilt-tripped me about something I didn’t even know existed.

Step 5: Take some Advil from steps 3 and 4.

And finally, Step 6: Go to Wikipedia.

My findings?

Step 1: “Dad, what’s the meaning of Valentine’s Day?”

“[Profanity deleted for sake of keeping my teaching job. But I’ll tell you it went on for exactly 18.5 minutes (the exact missing time in the Nixon tapes—coincidence?) and involved many different and creative uses for certain parts of the human anatomy and a goat.] Is that today? Your mother’s going to [expletive deleted] murder me!”

“Dad, I already got you a card and sent mom flowers from you*, calm down. I just want to know why we celebrate Valentine’s Day.”

*Artistic license.  I tried to send you flowers mom.  I did.  But dad went on some crazy rant about how if they wouldn’t be there by 3, I couldn’t send them.  And because I have no control over when flowers are delivered on the busiest flower day of the year, I was told not to do it.  I’m sorry.  Please don’t hurt me.

“Oh. Because billions of years ago, all the matter in the universe was tightly compacted into a really small space until it finally all exploded in what we call the Big Bang…”

This conversation lasted for 97 hours and at that point, we hadn’t even made it to the dinosaurs dying yet. It was time to ask Siri.

FAIL. And apparently Siri doesn’t understand sarcasm. Or else she was being nasty back when I sarcastically thanked her. What a [expletive deleted].

Okay, time for Step 3. Call Grandma.

Me: “Grandma, why do we celebrate Valentine’s Day?”

My Grandma: “I made you cabbage soup.”

Me: “Um thanks. I don’t really like cabbage soup though. But that’s not why I’m calling—”

My Grandma: “What do you mean you don’t like cabbage soup? You’ve never had my cabbage soup! You had it off the back of a truck once!”

Me: “Huh?”

Steps 4 and 5. And a glass of wine. Because that conversation actually happened. And I still have no idea what she was talking about because I’m 100 percent positive that I’ve never eaten cabbage soup off the back of a truck. And I don’t think that has anything to do with Valentine’s Day either.

On to Step 6. My old standby. Wikipedia. Which as we all know, is NEVER, EVER wrong. Or getting back together with Taylor Swift apparently.

According to Wikipedia, we celebrate Valentine’s Day because this dude, named Valentine (duh) was performing marriages illegally in the year 269 AD. So the Romans came to kill him, but he, in true romantic fashion, beat them to it. He cut his own heart out (which is pretty hardcore if you ask me. I mean, it’s one thing to use that weirdo chant from Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom and pull it out with magic, but CUTTING your own heart out takes real effort), wrote a nice little note to his girlfriend, signed it “From your Valentine,” and mailed the note and his heart to her, Van Gogh-style. Then the Romans came and slaughtered his zombie ass, as they should have, because anyone walking around AFTER cutting his own heart out NEEDS to be killed before he eats your brains. Duh again.

So unlike that ungrateful chick who got Van Gogh’s cut off ear, Valentine’s girlfriend thought this was sweet and romantic and wonderful and made all of her friends super jealous of the fact that HER zombie boyfriend loved her enough to cut out his own heart and mail it to her. Her friends then held out on sex until their boyfriends did the same the following year, and a tradition was born.

However, zombies weren’t popular until about two years ago, so Hallmark stepped in and started this paper heart nonsense.

Then the flower, candy, and teddy bear industries got involved to suck the life out of men’s wallets worldwide.

It’s what’s known in the industry as a perfect storm.

But this year, THIS YEAR, zombies are in style! They’re more popular than vampires! (Take that you sparkly Twilight [expletive deleteds]!) So men, use this to your advantage! Don’t buy in to the Hallmark nature of the holiday! If you love your woman, take some bath salts, go all zombie, and cut out your REAL heart to send to your girlfriend!

And the best part of this plan? It’ll work even on years when Valentine’s Day falls on Saturdays because the postal service will still deliver packages but not regular mail.

Everybody wins.

Until the zombies overtake us all.

Hmm. Maybe the Hallmark version isn’t so bad.

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone.

Advertisements

Winter may be coming, but winter break can’t come soon enough!

Tomorrow begins my least favorite month of the year.

Stop calling me a Grinch! It’s not because I hate Christmas!

And for once, I actually have a boyfriend, so Christmas this year will not be spent sitting in a darkened room with my parents and grandparents watching Rooney Mara get anally raped.  

 
 (No, Goodmans don’t typically celebrate Christmas with voyeuristic sodomy. My family made me see The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo with them last year. And I had to watch that scene sandwiched between my mother and my grandmother. It was worse than the time my dog rolled in another dog’s excrement. We’re talking THAT level of bad.)


And it has nothing to do with my complete and utter lack of understanding of Christmas decorations that have nothing to do with Christmas. (Although I still don’t get why Christians make up random characters to go with their holidays. Jews have the Maccabees and Mordechai and Esther and all, but they are actually related to the holidays they go with. We don’t let a random fat man into our house to lure our children under a tree with presents. Nor do we send our kids to go sit on a strange man’s lap at the mall. Seriously, how does no one recognize that Santa is creepy? And wtf is up with a giant pink bunny hiding eggs? Bunnies don’t even lay eggs! That’s just confusing and equally creepy if it’s the same guy in the bunny suit as in the Santa costume!)

No, December is my least favorite month for three reasons: Hanukkah, cold weather, and school.

Let’s go in order, shall we?

Hanukkah is the world’s worst holiday. And the world’s best holiday because my parents still get me eight wonderful night’s worth of presents. And Sara loves her presents. (Hint hint loyal readers, my shoe size is 8 ½, Ulta gift cards are lovely, and diamonds are a girl’s best friend. Just saying.)

But Jewish guilt then demands that I make sure that my parents both have presents to open for each of the eight nights. Stupid? Yes. But I’m not telling my parents that it’s okay to not give ME a present for any of the eight nights, so they need something too. Even if it’s something little. And my dad hasn’t purchased a present for my mom since I was 12 (in some indeterminate year in the 1990s. I will give you no more clues to my age than that!), when he started dropping me off at the mall with a credit card and saying “buy your mother something nice.”

The problem? My mom hates everything. Like she’ll literally pick out a present, tell me she wants it, send me all over creation to find it, then decide she doesn’t really want it and make me return it. She doesn’t return it. I have to return it.

Add in that I hate malls, hate the Christmas music that blares in malls at this time of year incessantly (except the Bruce versions, which are acceptable year round), hate holiday shoppers, and hate crowds, and this time of year becomes the stuff of nightmares.

This year, I came up with a solution to the What-to-Get-My-Parents problem. I sent them the following email.

Okay parentals, we have reached the point where you need to give me Hanukkah ideas. I have one tiny present for dad, nothing for mom. Failure to respond to this email with ideas for yourself and/or each other will result in me getting a tattoo of “Mom” in a heart on one butt cheek, “Dad” in a heart on the other, and I will personally deliver and show off said presents at your respective places of business. So please give me some ideas because I really don’t want that crap tattooed on my ass. K thanks bye.

Mom replied that she would work on it.

Dad didn’t reply.

And when I called my dad to tell him that I was on the way to the tattoo parlor to get his present, he said “Cool. Have fun.”

Thanks dad. Really. That was helpful.

Worst holiday ever. And therefore the panic attacks leading up to it when I have to come up with eight things to give my mother (she wants a grandchild, despite the fact that the boyfriend and I have decided that if we DO have a child in the future, we are naming him Jesus Nixon the Baptist III, just to piss my parents off. But that’s one present she’s NOT getting any time soon!) make December the worst month ever.

And even worse? It’s cold out. I’m a warm weather girl. I drive a convertible. I love the beach. And I REALLY hate shivering in the freezing pre-dawn air waiting for my dog to sniff out the one and only spot that she finds worthy of receiving her bodily excretions. (As a teacher, I’m not supposed to use profanity in my daily life, so I need to find creative ways to explain the process my dog uses in finding a spot to shit. Oops. Sorry mama.)

Is it winter break yet? OH WAIT, I still have three full weeks of school to teach in the worst teaching month. Because as kids get closer to time off from school, their behavior gets exponentially worse until even the best behaved students turn into something out of Lord of the Flies, complete with a conch shell, spears, hunting a beast, and killing a fat kid. Add the possibility of snow? You don’t want to think about that. Add in the fact that they KNOW a break is coming, that they’re getting presents, and that it might snow?

If you need me, I’ll be hiding under my desk, rocking like an autistic child. Just 75 more classes to teach after today until winter break. FML.

PS: HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my best friend, Ary!  Love ya!

Only two things can stop Christmas from starting too early: Cthulhu and Festivus

Halloween is over. Which can only mean one thing.

Cheap candy.

Okay, it means two things. Cheap candy and the start of the Christmas season.

Remember back in the day when Christmas season didn’t start until after Thanksgiving? Well if 40 is the new 30 and gray is the new black, I guess Halloween is the new Thanksgiving. Because somehow it’s Christmas already.

I know what you’re thinking. “Sara, stop being such a Grinch just because you’re Jewish.”

It has nothing to do with being Jewish. And I think the Grinch is a totally racist character. He hates Christmas and is the color of money? Dr. Seuss was really an anti-Semitic bastard!

Although, we should have known that already. One of his most famous books is extolling the virtues of ham. And in the end, the anti-pork character decides that he LOVES ham and stops eating kosher. Anti-Jewish propaganda much?

(Not really. Dr. Seuss was actually VERY outspoken against the Nazis during World War II. Big friend to the Jews, despite being of German ancestry.)

I don’t actually mind Christmas. Red is my favorite color. And I like going to the movies. I’m not a HUGE Chinese food fan, but that’s okay, because my family tends to go out for Indian food or sushi on Christmas these days. And I like presents, no matter what the occasion. I’m also a big fan of any event that causes sales. I’m even okay with Christmas taking up an entire month. I don’t LOVE it, but I’ve learned to accept it.

I’m not okay with it starting the second Halloween ends.

Not cool people, not cool.

My newspaper kids have already started playing Christmas music at school. Granted, they’re smart about it, because they know that I’ll tolerate Springsteen’s Christmas songs MUCH longer than any other holiday music.  But if I hear Mariah Carey doing “All I Want For Christmas Is You” one more freaking time, I’m going to lose it. And it’s only November 5th!

I blame Thanksgiving for the expansion of Christmas. Back in the day, a holiday based on eating massive quantities with your family was a big enough event to hold Christmas at bay until the very end of November. But now that everyone is so obsessed with eating right and avoiding obesity, Thanksgiving seems to have lost some of its power as a holiday.

Think about it. Even though a lot of people say it’s their favorite holiday, it’s like trying to hold off Christmas with Flag Day. It’s just not strong enough to keep Christmas in its place. Halloween does a good job of preventing Christmas from creeping into October because picking out a costume takes a lot of time and effort. If not for Halloween, I’m pretty sure people would be leaving Christmas lights up year round and we’d have Santa and Rudolph-themed bathing suits and beach towels by now.

Maybe I would feel differently if Christmas meant more to me than movies and Asian cuisine. Because Hanukkah isn’t much of a holiday. It’s kinda like the Jewish equivalent of the 4th of July.  It’s a holiday built around the idea of getting together with people you care about, eating fried food, and lighting stuff on fire to commemorate a military victory. There’s no reason for the presents other than to keep Jewish kids from feeling left out. But even though we love the presents, it’s not possible to get as into Hanukkah as it is Christmas.

But I have a couple of ideas about how to keep Christmas from creeping further and further into the rest of the year. (It’s like the boiler in the Shining. It creeps. Please tell me SOMEONE reading this—other than my parents—knows what I’m talking about! Please. Leave me a comment or email me if you get the joke. It’ll make me very happy. Even if I don’t know you. Just let me know you’re alive out there, okay?)

Idea #1: we bulk up Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is like a dyke with a hole in it (I mean the Holland kind of dyke! Get your minds out of the gutter). If you can plug the hole, it’ll hold the flood waters back. But otherwise, we’re screwed. So we need to make Thanksgiving a stronger holiday. There are several ways to do this. We could go the Easter route and come up with super random mascots for the holiday. Like the Thanksgiving duck-billed platypus. He brings baby snakes and Ugg boots to good little children. (Hey, it’s no more random than a bunny bringing eggs for Easter!)

We could also incorporate a fear angle into it. Celebrate Thanksgiving just right or a horrible, evil creature will come and destroy mankind. I’d like to suggest the Dark and Mighty Cthulhu (thank you South Park).

If people had to worry about Cthulhu coming to destroy the Earth, you’d better believe they’d would leave Christmas alone until Thanksgiving was over! Praise the Dark Cthulhu, long may he reign!

But for those of you purists out there who want to keep Thanksgiving as a non-religious or fear-based holiday (which, to be honest, it shouldn’t be. It wasn’t a happy occasion for the Native Americans. The pilgrims came bearing the gift of smallpox. What crappy houseguests!), there’s another answer: we need a new holiday between Halloween and Christmas.

Yes.

It’s time to make Festivus official.

Now, in MY family, we already incorporate parts of Festivus into Thanksgiving. We certainly have the Airing of Grievances (usually aimed at me, because my brother, as a doctor, is considered a god in our family). But if we had to get the pole and focus on the Feats of Strength, I think we MIGHT just be able to keep Christmas in December where it belongs. Think about it. We could have Festivus decorations and Festivus songs and Festivus presents. And as a non-denominational holiday, Festivus for the rest of us can REALLY bring the American people together to fight off Christmas creeping.

Who’s with me?

(By the way, you shouldn’t take this post in any way, shape, or form as an indication that I don’t want Christmas presents. I do. I’ll post a list of things I want soon to help you out. But great presents for me fall mostly into three categories: cash, shoes (size 8 1/2), and sparkly things. You should probably start shopping now. All the cool kids are doing it.)