Friday, December 13, 2013

Sometimes you just gotta Holler

Since Thanksgiving fell exceptionally late this year, I've been really poky getting into all things Christmasy. Our house still isn't decorated, I haven't bought a single gift for family members or friends, I still need to finish that second Red Scarf I started ages ago...

...oh, yeah. The Holiday Holler.

So for the newbies: back in the mists of time when I was a teenager, we got a lot of holiday newsletters at my house. A. LOT. And some of them were, to put it charitably, syrupy-sweet brag sheets. You've probably seen specimens of this kind: "At thirteen, Launcelot is the youngest-ever graduate of Harvard Medical School... nine-year-old Greyson saved a family of eight from a burning vehicle last week... little Mitzi is hard at work on her fifteenth sonata; the Boston Pops recently performed her Concerto #3..." people, if you're going to write prescription-strength bloviations, you should have the common decency to enclose a barf bag.

But the antidote to all this treacle came every year in the form of a different newsletter -- one in which the author told it EXACTLY like it was: "Our oldest is coming home this year since his parole officer gave him the OK... Gary broke his leg jumping off the roof again... at age ten, Felicia has become the youngest hitchhiker to make it to Missouri, and honestly we're thinking about leaving her there... gotta go, the cat's throwing up tinsel on the counter." We all loved this particular newsletter -- it was completely unpredictable, disarmingly honest and hilarious.

So when Captain Midnight and I had been married for a few years and decided we ought to send out our own Christmas newsletter, I already knew what I wanted: a one-sheet full of half-truths, distortions and outright lies, with a smidgen of reality mixed in. The first few years, it didn't even have a name; then I stole "Holiday Holler" from a friend's end-of-year broadsheet (yay, better living through blatant plagiarism!). One year I decided to slack off and not write a Holler, and received several indignant complaints from people who missed reading it, so I guessed I had to be doing something right.

These days we refer to the Holler list as the Mailing List of the Damned, since once you're on it you'll probably get a Holler until you up and die, join the Witness Protection Program, or move and leave no forwarding address.

Anyway, TL;DR version: this year's Holler still isn't finished. BUT SOON IT SHALL BE UNLEASHED UPON AN UNSUSPECTING POPULACE, MUAHAHAHA.


MarieC said...

BRING IT. And don't you dare drop me from the Mailing List of the Damned when we move to Utah!

Soozcat said...

Your wish is my command, O Masochistic One.