“I want my children to have all the things I couldn’t afford.  Then I want to move in with them.” — Phyllis Diller

That’s the epigram on the first page of Dan Mathews’ new, Like Crazy: Life with My Mother and Her Invisible Friends.

On  page 4, he makes reference to one of his favorite Christmas songs, “Daddy’s Drinkin’ Up Our Christmas.”

I am lying down as I read (grabbing a little late afternoon sun, if you must know), my phone a few feet away but Airpod Pros still planted from a leftover Zoom, and so — highly doubtful of success — I say into the air, “Hey, Siri, play ‘daddy’s drinkin’ up our Christmas.'”

No way, right?

You can ask her to play Jingle Bells and she’ll read you a Wikipedia entry on “jungle balls.”

There’s no way she’ll figure out what I said, let alone know this song.

If it’s even real.

“I’m on it!“ she replies.

“Yeah, right,” I mutter.

And two seconds later, there it was: Daddy’s Drinkin’ Up Our Christmas.

I was so blown away by this, I called a friend from Paris, Texas (I’ve been to Paris, Maine, but never Paris, Texas) who laughed and told me the title reminded him of a another Christmas classic.

But before I share that one with you, I’d like to note that it’s Hanukkah.

Or I should say: still Hanukkah.

How can it last so long?

It’s a miracle!

You’ve presumably seen the Smokey Robinson Hanukkah tweet (45 seconds).

But have you seen this Hanukkah missive (two minutes)?

And now, for the big finish, I give you — straight from my friend from Paris, Texas — Uncle Carl Came Out On Christmas.

Maybe it was too much sun, or just an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for how far the world has come (look who’s gonna be the next Secretary of Transportation, for Pete’s sake!) — or maybe it’s just that time of year — but I actually got a little misty at the end.

The way I do each year as “A Christmas Carol” ends.

Happy Hanukkah, dear reader.  Merry almost Christmas.  Thank you for your readership.



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