Sunday, December 9, 2012

Let the Holidays Begin

Dearest Readers,

Each year as the holiday season approaches, I find myself looking for something (an event, a moment, whatever) to put me into the holiday spirit.  For the last several years, that event has been the annual gag gift party that two friends (married to each other) throw.

For a good number of people, Thanksgiving is the holiday marker, but for some reason that just doesn't do it for me.  Perhaps because I have taken it upon myself to be the T-give host or the fact that in Texas it's still likely to be 80 degrees outside on that certain Thursday.  In any event, I look forward to this part for a number of reasons.

First, my friends (we'll call them Vince and Patricia) have a great and eclectic group of friends.  They run the gamut from a classically trained and very talented opera singer to photographers to advertising designers etc. Just a huge group of nice and genuine people who all mostly seem to really like one another's company.

Also, Vince and Patricia and their clan of friends are admirers of all things edible.  That's a big plus in my book.  For the party they smoked a salmon that morning and made some really great canapes, had an excellent tortellini salad, of course pigs in blankets were prominently involved and Patricia's world famous cheese bombs.  This is a wonderful bread bowl with a cheese, bacon, spicy pepper mix that is then forced into an oven to think about what it's done.  It is very spicy, gooey and bacony.  I love everything about this.

The best part of the evening is the White Elephant gift exchange.  Gifts are limited to $10 and should be something off-the-wall or embarrassing for both the giver and receiver. If you aren't familiar with this exchange, here's how it works.  We draw numbers and then take turns choosing a wrapped gift and open in front of the group.  When your number comes up, you can steal an already opened gift or pick an unwrapped one.  A gift can only be stolen twice and then it is locked in and cannot be stolen again.

Being a large contingent of irreverent bastards, the gifts ranged from the useful (read alcohol samplers) to the embarrassing (inflatable sex dolls, cock socks, etc).  This year, I brought this as my contribution:
It's a 60's vinyl LP of Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass Band's Tijuana Christmas album.  I found it at a second hand store for $4.  I was already ahead of the game, dear readers.

Of the 27 gifts, I drew #23.  Not a bad position to be in.  If there were an item stolen once that I wanted I could swoop in and lock it in and most of the gifts would be open.  As you can imagine, that's exactly what I did.

A friend of Vince and Patricia's works on the new Dallas TV show.  They just finished shooting the upcoming season and were getting rid of props they wouldn't need in future seasons so their friend grabbed some swag and put one such piece in the gift exchange.  It was opened by Vince who loved it and was stolen by her cousin (whom I think works for the ASPCA) at number 21.

I have to tell you dear reader, when this gift was opened, I knew it was going to come home with me.  So Sue Ellen Ewing is running for Governor of Texas in the upcoming season.  And he brought this:

I brought home a Sue Ellen Ewing for Governor campaign poster.  And all of you at the party who wanted this but didn't steal it when you had the chance? Suck it.

I took home the grand prize.  Let the holidays begin.  God bless us everyone.

As always,
Your humblest of servants

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