Christmas Freak

The merriest corner of the Internet

Category: Merry Places

Shopping Malls

It’s so gauche to like malls these days. Why? They contain the entirety of Christmas, broken down into its individual components and displayed year-round—gifts, cinnamon buns, cards, ribbons, fancy paper—only pre-wrapped and not free. While everyone else is going on a hike or engaging in intellectual activity this weekend, I’ll be gliding across the white tile floors of my local mall without shame. I’ll be sampling all of the perfume in the department store and sitting in the massage chairs at Brookstone for as long as I desire and riding the escalators up and down and up and down. The best parts of life are the ones that bring us pleasure.

Grocery Stores

Guest post today at Eat Genius!

I confess. I go to the grocery store every day—sometimes twice a day, sometimes to different stores to pick up items that cannot be found in the same place, sometimes to the same store to pick up an additional item or to merely meander the aisles and admire the gleaming abundance, in which case I like to dress appropriately in long johns and a belted sweater coat that best approximates a robe, for everyone knows that grocery stores are the everyday proxies for Christmas morning.

One must always use a cart in a grocery store. I like to glide beneath the fluorescent lights, feeling the fine mist from the vegetable section collect on my eyelashes as I pass. I breeze through the mountains of produce, gleaming with ripeness, as though the bounty of the world has been harvested, boxed, and presented to me in a lavish display of gifts. I fill my sleigh with exotic and out-of-season fruits—a purple banana, a celebratory pineapple; the height of true luxury. I sample all of the cheeses in the dairy section, sometimes taking seconds if no one is paying attention, and fantasize about fireplaces stacked with logs of charcuterie, mantles strung with bulk food dispensers; elves noshing on microgreens and tempeh, while a frost blooms over the freezer section windows. In the distance, a row of checkout scanners bleeps the beginning of an almost recognizable Christmas carol.

Airports

Am I the only person left in the world who still likes airports? I find them festive regardless of the season, and no one can convince me otherwise. I like taking off my shoes before entering the x-ray machine because it gives me an excuse to show off my socks. I like duty-free shopping, and how at any moment I can pop in and buy a Toblerone the size of my arm, and if I start eating it a few hours later while waiting at my gate, no one will look at me askance because anything is fair game at the airport. I like wandering the terminals, searching for the cheapest bottle of water. It’s important to challenge one’s brain from time to time. I even like the food. In the airport, it’s less about quality and more about quantity–the best treat is the one that takes the longest to eat, thus keeping you occupied. I try to get as many small, individually wrapped items as possible, and eat them over an extended period of time, treating them like hors d’oeuvres. But most of all, I like seeing entire families forced to sit together for hours on end, their luggage piled around them like gifts, the floor scattered with chips and spent Cinnabon boxes. Togetherness in its most raw form. Isn’t that part of what the holidays are all about?

 

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