No, this isn’t about Harry Truman or a visiting reindeer…it’s the last of the Kvetch over Xmas Series so please make the most of it.
It’s about me being broke from all the cash I had to shell out… HAD, being the operative word.
You see, I’m from the school of, gifts given should come from the heart and received as a grace, not a due with a gun to your head. I have a serious problem with this.
There are some people in my life that just do not deserve a gratuity, like the mailman for instance. I have nothing against the mailman, don’t get me wrong, but nowadays there are ten of them not just one.
When I grew up we had Bob Fieller who delivered our mail for twenty years. He got hand-crocheted sweaters and cashmere socks from The Fairfield Department Store. My grandfather even had him on his Panattoni list (Italian fruitcake), which was a really big deal. We had a relationship. Also let me mention Mr. Fieller never popped a little postcard in your box hinting at cold feet, as it were.
We adored him and couldn’t wait to lavish him with our appreciation.
I received more of those little reminders than I’d care to mention. I actually had to ask myself, who are these people? Don Chou, Manny Herdandez, Frank something or other. It was terribly confusing.
“Do the right thing!” my neighbor Trudy urged after paying off her squad of doormen. All that statement did was annoy me further.
“You sound cheap and heartless Susannah,” Trudy tactfully said.
“You sound drunk, was my big comeback since she was and truth be told, she wasn’t so happy doing the right thing come to find out either. In a moment of miserly chagrin she said, “Why do I have to give that guy money who always falls asleep at the elevator late at night?”
“You should have given him coffee,” I said, wondering why my humor wasn’t more readily embraced. “
“I could get raped and robbed because of him.”
Robbed maybe…raped, I don’t know…run away is more like it. No I didn’t say that.
On a brighter note, I wanted to give something to Angelina Hollywood who does my nails. I love her, it was sincere on my part. I gave cookies to John at my cleaners because he stands on his head for me. No he’s not a yogi, he’s just very sweet. He sews all my loose buttons as a courtesy.
Mustn’t forget Phil the shoemaker who I couldn’t live without. Short of my back he’s fixed everything I own. I wanted to give all of them gifts monetary or otherwise to show my gratitude.
It was heartfelt, not obligatory.
Then we had the list of, you better give or you’ll find your mail in someone eles’s box, like in Cleveland. Or that handyman who gives you the creeps will stalk you big time if you don’t come up with a crisp 50. Honestly, it’s like dealing with The Black Hand. From The Godfather? Time to watch it again by the way. It’s such a great Holiday film especially when Michael and Kay come from Radio City Music Hall after seeing The Bells of St. Mary to find that Vito’s been shot. So festive.
Yes, yes, I’m digressing, I know that.
I’m as generous as they come, really…but grace…we forget that’s what a gift is and where it stems from. I’m not playing the you have to game anymore…well…
as of next year.
Brother, can you spare a dime?
I forgot to tip the tailor.