“One of the most glorious messes in the world is the mess created in the living room on Christmas day. Don’t clean it up too quickly.” – Andy Rooney
Greetings to all of my piglets. Today we have yet another round added to our stack of stories for the Christmas series. So far this year, I’ve shot my mouth off about the true meaning of Christmas, Santa Claus and those wonderful hung-over producing Christmas Parties. For today’s continuation, we will talk about those little “packages”. Those things that come in boxes, and bags, all wrapped up in pretty decorated paper. That’s right, you guessed it, PRESENTS.
A gift for Christmas is always given as an expression of our love towards the receiver. Presents come in all different sizes, shapes and colors. I have seen people give expensive gifts to where they had to mortgage the house to pay for them. I have also seen presents be as simple as a plate of cookies (Chocolate chip are my personal favorite, hint, hint). Presents should never be given with the intention of out gifting someone or trying to score brownie points with the receiver. I, myself, love giving what I hope is the best gift to ever give. I always want the receiver to know how much I do care for them. And that leads us to today’s story. So before we start, do you have a nice warm fire burning in the fireplace? Are you all snuggled up nice and warm? How about a nice cup of hot chocolate to sip while we read? Ready or not, here we go.
Our story today took place a few Christmases ago when we had friends of the family who were in the Air Force and were stationed at Randolph AFB. The young couples’ names were Lindley and Emily and we all became friends through church. Being a young couple just starting out in their married life, they didn’t have a whole lot of disposable income. So I guess you could say, our family sort of adopted them. Every weekend, they came over for dinner and we would play games or watch movies together. We were a tight-knit group and always did what we could for each other.
In November of that year, on one Friday night, we all went out for pizza and beer at our local Pizza Hut (Yeah, I know, they suck) The plan was to eat there, then rent a couple of movies and go home to watch them. As we headed home Stacey wanted to stop at Sonic for some ice cream. We all picked our favorite flavor of shake, can you guess what mine was? Yeap, Chocolate, oh yeah baby. Anyway, we got home, fired up the DVD player, sipped our shakes and enjoyed the movies.
When it came time to say goodnight, we stood in the front entry and hugged bye and talked some what-not. Now at this point of the evening, Lindley was acting a bit particular. He couldn’t get out of the house fast enough. Odd as it was, Rainman & I followed them out the door and walked with them to their car. Lindley & Emily drove off into the night. Rainman & I turned and headed back into the house. The second we stepped in the door we found out why Lindley wanted to leave so fast. We had walked right into a green cloud of super charged fart gas that had the same toxic level to that of mustard gas. Yeap, it seems that our boy Lindley was holding and holding and held on till he could hold no more. His SBD was so powerful on the rank scale that it made both of us almost throw-up. Hell man, there was even cracks forming in the paint on the walls. Even the poor dog had to run outside to get away from it.
Stacey called from the bedroom and asked what was the matter. We stood there gagging and before we could catch our breath to warn her, she came down the hall and walked right into it. She quickly turned two shades of blue and headed back to the bedroom while the two of us braved contracting a deadly illness and got the windows open to air out the house. It was so bad that Stacey was mad as hell when she called Lindley at home just to chew his nasty butt out. Of course Lindley apologized over and over, he said that he was lactose intolerant. “Then why did you have a shake?” Stacey asked him.
“Because it sounded so good and I wanted one, I figured we would have been long gone before the shake would have kicked in” Lindley admitted.
“Well, you figured dead wrong and now Ray will have to repaint the front room” Stacey retorted. The incident was soon dropped and forgotten about under the new rule: No dairy products for Lindley more than two hours till departure.
As time passed, the days soon turned into weeks and Christmas was right around the corner. We planned to have a Christmas party on Christmas Eve at our house with all our friends from church. There was to be a couples, small gift exchange during the party. We picked Lindley & Emily as our couple. Stacey wanted to get them some” little something” that turned out to be a chick gift. Rainman didn’t see that as fair to Lindley since all couples gifts are usually aimed towards the dames away. So to balance the scale to equal gifts for all, Rainman & I set out to buy Lindley a gift of his own.
With Rainman being this big kid type of guy every Christmas season, we ended up getting Lindley a remote controlled truck. In fact, Rainman was so impressed with his purchase that he bought one for him and one for me too. That way the three of us could act like a couple of spoiled bratty kids playing with our trucks together. When we got home, we showed mom what we bought, would you believe that she immediately snatched them up and told the two of us we had to wait for Christmas just like Lindley. Ouch, that hurt, we wanted to play now.
Well after an unbearable week and a half of waiting, Christmas Eve finally came. Everybody from church came over, we were rocking around the Christmas tree and keeping a close eye out for St. Nick. The time had come to open presents. The sixteen of us gathered around in the living room and the presents were passed out. But then Rainman comes out of the front bedroom with a bagged gift. Something was amiss here, that bag was too small to hold the remote controlled truck. He handed Lindley the bag and said “Merry Christmas Bud, I hope you like it.”
“Thank you and Merry Christmas to you too” Lindley said, he had this big cheesy grin on his face.
Everybody took turns opening their gifts, everything was pretty and nice. Then it became Emily’s turn, she opened hers to find a nice bubble bath set with candles and scents (like I said, chick stuff).
“Oh how pretty, thank you Stacey” she said. Funny how she knew it wasn’t from Rainman. It was Lindley’s turn, again I knew what was not in that bag so I looked over at Rainman and gave him a “what’s up” look. He just nodded back. Lindley tore open the bag and reached inside. He pulled out something wrapped in an old shop towel. Everyone watched with curiosity as Lindley continued to unwrap the mystery gift. Lindley held it out in his hand and with the sound of shock in his voice he said “I got a ROCK.” It was indeed a rock, I recognized the rock, it was from our garden in the front yard. What happened to the truck? Lindley repeated it again “I got a rock.” The room fell silent, I think everyone in the room was just as shocked as Lindley was. Rainman was the only one grinning, and he was doing that from ear to ear. This was really fucked up. But Emily never missed a beat. She turned to her husband, looked him straight in the face and bellowed out for all of the room to hear “Well, that’s what you get for farting in someones house.”
The whole room erupted in laughter. Lindley hung his head in shame.
The Pastors wife let out a “Oh my Lord.” Greg, one of the Deacons, laughed so hard he started choking on a chicken wing he was eating and had to be slapped on the back. The Pastor himself was so appalled that he popped his denture loose and had to excuse himself. No one was about to let poor Lindley off the hook this time. Everyone wanted to know the details behind this “fart” that caused him to get a rock for Christmas. But the only thing Lindley could say was, “I got a rock”, and the laughter continued. Rainman finally let Lindley off the hook, he pulled out the real gift and handed it to him. As he unwrapped his real gift, Lindley kept saying it over and over “I can’t believe you gave me a rock.” Meanwhile, Rainman rolled out the other two trucks. He had spent the day charging up the batteries so that they were ready to roll. We began to chase each other around the house with the trucks – that is until mom made us put them up.
When it came time to leave, the pastor was still bewildered at Rainman and told him he would be praying for his salvation for pulling such a mean prank. Rainman just shook his hand and said thank you Pastor, I know I really need that prayer. Emily gave Rainman a hug, thanked him for such a wonderful party, and wished him a Merry Christmas. Lindley stood there with his truck tucked up under his arm. Instead of hugging or even giving Rainman a handshake, he just handed Rainman back the rock. He said it one more time “I can’t believe you gave me a rock for Christmas.” They finally hugged and all was right in the world once again. As the last guest drove away, Rainman took the rock and placed it under the Texas shaped family logo next to the garage door. He placed it there so that everytime he saw that rock, he would remember the time he pulled one of the greatest Christmas pranks of all times.
Hey everyone, I just wanted you to know that I really enjoy having the opportunity to write these stories, if you enjoy them, leave me a comment once in a while. I would love to hear from you. I would like to wish each and every one of you a Merry Christmas and may the new year be full of blessing for you.
“Blessed is the season which engages the whole world in a conspiracy of love!” – Hamilton Wright Mabie
Ride Hard or Stay Home