Xmas Progress Report

Since publishing Max’s Top 10 Gift List, my Amazon auto-feed of product recommendations has been bizarre.

I’ve been getting messages from Mr. Bezos’ customer service bot asking, “Tom, are you still interested in fish sandals and gender reassignment kits?” No, Jeff, I’m not.

And that was before I actually purchased this set of three Racing Possums for our son who is 40-something and a company CEO. The one who complains that we always buy him strange gifts.

Keep your dreidel, I want some possums under my Kwanzaa bush!
Here’s another look. Note Waste Management dumpster in background for authenticity!

If you were ready to rush out and get yourself some possums I got bad news for you. They are sold out on Amazon. Oh I suspect there are several bazillion in containers on cargo ships stuck outside the Port of Los Angeles but for now you are out of luck. You snooze, you lose. Neener, neener, neener.

Unfortunately, I did get some bad news. Our neighbor elected not to install a Nativity Set on his lawn this year. Yes, the same Nativity Set where last year a hedgehog stuffie was inserted surreptitiously near the Baby Jesus by party or parties unknown.

This news was traumatic to me because I had already spent a considerable amount of time, maybe 6 or 7 minutes, devising shenanigans for this year’s holiday display. I had procured a package of googly eyes perfectly sized to fit the Wise Men and the camels, donkeys and such other beasts as might have appeared.

“I really wish you wouldn’t do this stuff, DogDad.”

Out of respect (and fear of reprisals if discovered) I would have eschewed googly-eyeing the principal characters in the Nativity Set but the rest of the cast were fair game. But noooo…old Mr. Scroogey McHumbug decided to stick with those silly wire deer with the blinking mini lights and this year there will be no slouching toward Bethlehem in Rancho Cucaracha. I suppose I could get larger googly eyes and do the deer but that just doesn’t resonate with me.

So here I am stuck with an extraneous hedgehog and a bag of small googly eyes.

“I don’t want them. Oh wait, I’ll take the hedgehog.”

I finished putting up my Xmas lights, an event that includes equal amounts of physical effort and cursing at the fine Chinese craftsmen who made those fragile, easily tangled strings of glowing orbs. It seems all the men on our street chose to put up lights on the same day. Perhaps the spousal units are conspiring.

A couple of doors down a neighbor was doing the same job as me except he was seriously knocking back the Old Milwaukees as he worked and now has the most lop-sided lights on the street. But he’s still our hero.

Xmas shopping is proceeding apace. We requested gift lists from the Grandspawn but after reviewing them, the AJF and I realized we have simply no idea at all what twin 12 year old girls would like in terms of colors, brands, designs and such. So we informed their Mom that they would be getting Amazon gift cards (which, I suspect, is what they really want anyway).

“I hope I get something delicious.”

As usual Amazon Prime has been a resource of rare value. A few more moments of inspiration such as that which accompanied the Racing Possums and I’ll be able to finish my shopping.

I’m all set with the Alpha Japanese Female’s present but her gift is a secret for now. I will tell you that it doesn’t involve anything on Max’s list. She has it easy – for years my Xmas gifts from her have always been the same: a bottle of Remy Martin cognac and a box of See’s Candies, the “Nuts and Chews” doncha know.

I take her shopping, she says “Drop me off by See’s Candies and I’ll meet you in 30 minutes over at Total Wines & Liquors” and yet I am supposed to be surprised on the morning of December 25.

So, for now, the beat goes on…but no possums for you.

“I’m not spying for gifts. Just…looking.”

76 replies

  1. Oh man, the racing possums…I don’t know if I could give them away. Max is so cute…turning it on for Santa I presume. He deserves a stocking full😄

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Max looks great in all of those pictures, well done Max!
    Remy Martin? Just how much money does she have?
    Jealousy here.
    Racing possums sounds ideal for a 40 something, he will be going through a midlife crisis anyway (I had 3).
    The Puritan life avoids garish plastic lights and needless festivities, but not plum puddings.
    No decorations here but a vast array of cards, eventually. Cheaper also.
    Keep the beat going…

    Liked by 3 people

    • I have to confess that it is the VSOP that I receive, not the Extra or any of the Hors d’Age stuff. I get one jug a year and I have to stretch it out so it’s reserved for auspicious occasions like, oh, birthdays, holidays, a Saturday, Wednesday or something like that. You’re such an Ebenezer – no lights? Hmppph. The Ghost of Christmas past will visit you and bring back memories of your years at Tennents.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Racing possums? I think it would be money well spent if you purchased a set for each of your male neighbors, as well as one for yourself. Think of the hours of fun to be had racing them down your street and up and down each other’s driveways. Why, you could turn this into an Olympic event!

    Tom, you are certifiably nuts! That’s why Murphy and I love you. ‘Course, we love Max more, but we won’t go into that today!🤪

    Liked by 3 people

    • With all the new sports that comprise the Olympics I am all for Possum Racing as an addition. We can start with the sprints and add distance events later. Maybe a Possum steeplechase or High Jump. That will teach the Chinese!


    • Yeah, well, it won’t be at Amazon. But I have it on good authority that possum racers can be found at other fine online retailers – just in case the urge to buy some is overpowering.


  4. Oh, little Max–you are such a cutie.
    See’s Candies–that is some kind of delicious. Keeping it easy on Mr Lois, I direct him to The Fresh Market for a bag of bridge mix, plus an extra bag of malted milk balls and chocolate almonds. Dark chocolate be damned–I prefer milk chocolate. Lucky for me that the racing possums are sold out. I could see them racing for my chocolate. Big mistake, you guys.
    What in the heck is up with your neighbor?! I was ready to hear what kind of shenanigans you were gonna pull this year. There goes my Christmas fun.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I think the cats would love to chase racing possums, Lois. Assuming Mr. Lois isn’t hogging them for himself. Chocolate covered almonds are among my faves. I actually have to ration myself with those things; they are like crack cocaine to me. As to chocolate, dark or milk are both fine for me just give me more, more, more…you see my problem. Yeah, I’m sad the neighbor retired the Nativity Set. Still hoping to come up with something to bedevil him once again this year.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Love the racing possums! I missed Max’s gift list so will have to go read that now! Max, you’re looking mighty handsome! So sad about the nativity scene. That is truly a let-down of epic proportions!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Max recently visited Miss Jessica at the groomers and is feeling and looking spiffy. By all means visit the gift suggestions, they’re sure to offer something for the special ones on your Xmas list.


    • I see no reason that Jacques should be deprived of the possums. I don’t think they squeak – the advertising is unclear on that point – but they could entertain him for hours or at least minutes until he rips them apart in a fit of Gallic ill temper. Amazon Europe may still have them in stock – I mean, do you guys even have possums over there?


  6. A racing trash panda has got to be the next evolution. They could have ringed tails that swing back and forth as they run. I’m think Nox would enjoy spending time with racing wildlife and I can picture her running back and forth over the length of the RV chasing the furry critter. Bruce might like one under his tree, too!


  7. HAHAHAHAHAHA*snort*HAHAHAHA! 😀 😛 You slay me! 😀
    Maybe stick the googly eyes all over your face and body and go Christmas caroling to all of your neighbors?!?! 😛 Just say you are Argus Panoptes, Cyclops’ many-eyed cousin! 😛

    HA! I remember the hedgehog visiting the baby Jesus! and I remember who put it there!
    I am highly disappointed in your neighbor! I was looking forward to seeing who else might visit the baby Jesus this year. Darn.

    When my now all-grown-adult (and w-a-y more mature than me) children were little kiddos our inside Nativity Scene often had Batman, My Little Pony, and Luke Skywalker visiting the baby Jesus. Fun times! 😀

    Max: we hope you get LOTS of delicious Christmas gifts! 🙂
    PATS and RUBS!!! 🙂
    PS…Cooper says your title should read: “Xmas Paw-gress Report”! That Coop, he always goes for the pun! 😉 😛


  8. You literally make me belly laugh every time. Finley just stares at me. First, I had a pet stuffed hedgehog when I was small. I lost that one. Now I have a stuffed one that’s much tinier. Secondly, the pic with Max, the hedgehog, and the googly eyes was where I lost it-the look on Max’s face (speaking of his face–he’s so beautiful. My little gal gets the tear-stains; I’ve tried everything)!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Actually, Cognac and See’s Candies sounds like the perfect gift. We have plenty of dead possums in the roads around here so I don’t need those. Sorry about the nativity. Foiled again.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Maybe you’d like a nice armadillo? I happen to know where I can get stuffed ‘Dillos to grace your living room. Just say the word. And , yeah, I have no gripe with cognac and chocs.


      • I will not say the word. We have no taxidermy going on in our home. Just cheap Christmas artwork from Burlington Coat Factory right now, to compliment the tree and the colored lights and the garlands and the cute little Hallmark red trucks and llamas and snowmen and Santa. Maybe I’m not winning at empty nesting but we have certainly decked the halls. By the way, Max is looking very youthful.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. No nativity scene for hedgehog to crash – that’s just a bummer. One might almost think the neighbors had been doing their own planning to avoid googly eyes. If only those racing possums were remote control… imagine the possibilities!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. You’re proving that we humans aren’t so different than our betters (our canine companions). Figure out what we like, and we’ll like it time after time after time.

    Smart wife, you have.

    And good on you, having simple tastes: cognac and chocolates. Easy to please = easily made happy = good marriage.

    PS: I’m disappointed there won’t be a post about punking the neighbor’s holiday display.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Bwahahaha! You slay me. Might I suggest consulting a professional to determine the roots of the googly eye obsession? I gotta say though, I may ask you to be my Christmas Shopper next year since clearly I have no imagination. Racing possums…brilliant. A dumpster toy chest to store said marsupials would be even more brilliant. Does the Nativity Neighbor know how lucky he is having you on the block?

    Liked by 1 person

  13. The downside of my hiatus from WP was missing your and Max’s posts. But here I am with a big smile to start the new year, so that’s good. Max is looking very handsome … I’m sure Santa was good to him!! Had to laugh at your plans for your neighbor’s nativity and the googly eyes. Now that was a super idea!!

    Liked by 1 person

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