I want to start with a huge thank you to David Kulesz for all of the efforts he makes to light up his home in Dalworthington Gardens, a community surrounded by the City of Arlington in which I live. He does this in honor of his mother who passed away from Alzheimer's and posts a sign in his front yard encouraging people to give to the Alzheimer's Association. You can read more about him here. As a result of his labors, we get to enjoy the twinkling of around 400,000 lights dangling from trees, bushes, fences and houses, as we get into the Christmas mood.
I haven't always enjoyed Christmas. I don't like traffic. I don't like people being, or people thinking I'm being, nice because of the season. I don't like trying to cram 4 weeks of work into 2 and a half, so that I can take some time off. The list goes on. When I was in college, I went to get a haircut at a nearby Supercuts during winter break and, being a young adult who did not regularly go for a haircut, did not realize it was customary to tip the hair stylist. When I got home, my wife asked me how much of a tip I had left. When I admitted I hadn't left one, she explained that tipping was part of life in hair cutting transactions. I felt badly that I had not, so I took a few dollars and drove back to give the stylist a tip. When I gave her the few dollars I brought, she said something along the lines of "it must be the season. Thank you." I was so incensed that she thought I would only be nice because of the season that I made sure to tell her "bah, humbug" on my way out the door.
I've gotten better. My wife and children love Christmas and beg to put up lights, decorate the tree, make Christmas cookies and the like. Their joy is infectious and I find that I can't be a humbug with other people cheering on the season, and this is one of the reasons for the hearty thanks to Mr. Kulesz. Not only is he cheering on the season, he is honoring his family and helping an organization that is doing good work within our community.
I wish all of you a healthy, happy, hearty Merry Christmas and wish blessings upon you in a Happy New Year.