Preparations for Christmas festivities are creating an air of expectation and excitement around Huckleberry Close this morning, and I couldn’t help noticing that next door people seemed to be stopping by at my neighbor, Marjory’s house looking at the rather imposing Christmas decorations in front of her house. A truly excited sense of seasonal cheer has developed in our little community.
The children have had their last day of school, and inspite of the unseasonably warm weather they are playing in the street and throwing snowballs at one another and laughing. Indeed the festivities this morning spilled over in a rather unusual incident worth recalling. It all started with Auntie Kittie rolling into my kitchen at 9 am, a little bleary eyed, looking for coffee and advice.
“Fiona,” she said a little groggily. “I think I may be experiencing hallucinations.”
I did my best to calm her down, as she sat looking worried.
“I swear that Santa Claus in Marjory’s garden just flashed me,” she groaned as she shakily took the coffee I offered her.
“That seems a little unlikely,” I said with my usual compassion and care.
“I’m serious. I was walking up your drive and I glanced at his jolly looking face, and the next thing I knew he was exposing himself. I know how this sounds, but I swear he whipped out his great big candy cane and started poking it at me!”
I looked at her a little skeptically. Marjory is generally really quite conservative. The decorations at her house are always very well done, and this year she has an eight foot tall Santa, with a couple of elves around him, and Sylvester has installed a rather ingenious little motor attached to a motion detector which moves his arm up and down waving at the children that go by. It’s all very impressive.
“Just how much of that eggnog did you try last night,” I asked Auntie Kittie.
“Not that much,” she replied sharply as the coffee began to wake her up.
At that moment I happened to glance out of my window to see a couple of the children in the street being hurried off by parents who were covering their eyes, and looking extremely upset. Now, in case you are unaware, Marjory is involved in a romance with my wife’s friend Amanda, the editor of that venerable cornerstone of the media, Pig and Pig Farmer Weekly. I find Amanda to be a frequent and annoying visitor, often arriving at my house expecting to visit my wife. Unfortunately my wife is traveling at present. I believe she is visiting Easter Island on a somewhat ironically timed cultural exchange.
“You know, Kittie, you might want to throttle back on the alcohol, my dear,” I said gently. “When Santa’s flashing you as you walk by there’s a good chance you’re seeing things that aren’t really there. I believe it’s called Dilerium tremens. It’s latin, you know.”
“I think that Santa’s a bit Latin. And those elves look a little worried, too.”
At that moment I there was a knocking on my back door and I opened it to find both Marjory and Amanda standing in the snow. Amanda was wearing a pair of mens pajamas, and a raincoat, and Marjory wore a huge tee shirt emblazoned with the unlikely words ‘Sausage Champion 2017 – Rhode Island Competitive Eating Festival’.
“What on earth is the matter,” I asked ushering them into the warm kitchen, and pouring coffee for them.
“You have to get Sylvester over as soon as possible,” said Amanda with a worried look on her face. “Hopefully he’ll get here before the police.”
“What on earth do you mean?” I replied.
“It’s Santa. He’s sexually assaulting the elves. Or at least that’s what it looks like from the road,” said Marjory.
“Well, that sounds very festive, I must say.” I joked. The comment fell rather flat as yet another shocked looking child was ushered away by angry parents outside in the street.
“I think I had better have a look,” I said.
With that I walked out into the front garden and out into the street. The problem was at once apparent. Santa stood there, grinning what now appeared to be a deranged smile, and as my motion was detected the shaft that would usually connect to his arm to start the waving motion, instead pushed what appeared to be a large candy cane in and out infront of him at waist height. The image was disturbing in the extreme, particularly when viewed from this particular angle where an elf was bending over, helping load presents onto Santa’s elaborate sleigh.
I came back into the house and immediately called Sylvester.
“We have a Christmas emergency,” I said as he answered.
A few minutes later Sylvester arrived and fixed the problem, a shaft having come loose in the mechanism he’d built. Apparently the joint had worked loose in the night and where Sylvester had used some spare materials (which he’d had left over from another Christmas project) the constant movement had worn out the makeshift part. The result was what appeared to be a candy cane poking out the front of Santa’s costume in a rhythmic thrusting motion reminiscent of some very un-Santa like activities.
Having traumatised enough passing children for one Christmas Sylvester quickly solved the problem with some oil, some duct tape and a length of rope. And after all, isn’t that what Christmas is all about. Fortunately here in Canada trauma counselling for minors is mercifully covered under our free healthcare, so no harm done.
At this precise moment, some of Kitties numerous nephews and nieces arrived in a boisterous huddle of ski jackets and boots and asked if they could see the Christmas flasher everyone was talking about on Twitter. Happy days.
Now, to our remarkable Eggnog recipe. If you’d like to try this at home it really is a fun thing to make for Christmas guests. You’ll need six eggs, three quarters of a cup of brown sugar, some nutmeg (fresh is best, though ground will do), 32ounces of milk (which is about a litre), 16 ounces of heavy cream (half a litre), 8 ounces of Bourbon, and 6 ounces of rum. You can substitute some of the sugar for honey if you’d like to be creative.
If you have two large bowls it will help. First separate the egg yolks and the egg whites into separate bowls. With the yolks, add half a cup of sugar and start whisking the contents. The wrist action used may be familiar to some of us – just use your imagination. Once the sugar and yolks are well mixed add the milk, cream, bourbon and rum, making sure no one has already started in on it (Auntie Kittie!). In the second bowl whisk the egg whites and the remaining sugar. Thoroughly beat the egg whites until they are form soft peaks. Combine about half of this with the first bowl.
If you serve the eggnog in smallish cups you’ll have plenty for about 12 servings. You can top each serving from the second bowl (the egg whites) to add frothiness. Sprinkle nutmeg on the top of each serving. Some people like it slightly warmed, particularly when it’s minus twenty outside.
I’ve found that if you put the eggnog into a large plastic coke bottle you can give it a thorough shake now and then and serve it to friends as you go carol singing and not be arrested for public drunkenness in most cases.
If you’d like to send a pic of yourself dressed and enjoying this lovely mixture I will select the best ones and offer a prize of free membership in my Premium Program. Either way, enjoy it responsibly, and have fun. Let me know how you get along.
Merry Christmas, and be sure to look in online as I’ll be on the website chatting, or answering questions and comments on my Patreon throughout the holiday.
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