The holidays are here and like the leading player in Pippin sings, we’ve got magic to do. In fact, that might be the Opening Number in the future smash Broadway musical I will one day write called “Moms in December.” Picture it. It opens with a few friends over a fun Sunday morning brunch at someone’s house, with champagne and quiche and friends saying how nice their Thanksgiving was … and then the brunch is suddenly interrupted by a flash of lightning and the ghost of Christmas present arrives and says to hurry up and drink that bubbly because you’ve got shopping to do, and cards to write, and gifts to wrap, and handwriting to disguise, and an elf to hide, and a credit card to pay off, and reservations to make, and groceries to buy, and cookies to bake … and teacher gifts and something for the bus driver and don’t forget the office grab bag and what are you wearing to the holiday party and did you line up a sitter and the curtain comes down on Thanksgiving weekend.
Scene Two. Same moms, looking decidedly less festive, pushing their carts through Target and talking about how they really do want to shop small, but the stores aren’t open at 8 pmwhen moms are done carpooling and dinner-making and homework-reviewing. They sing together “We love our town, and we love those shops, but shopping small is for people that are RE-tired …. and not just … tired!”
Scene Three. Same moms, but on face-time, as they hide in the unfinished storage area of their basement frantically wrapping gifts in the Santa paper in the dead of night, with a half bottle of Sauvignon Blanc and a long crazy straw on the adjacent prop table. They sing “Can’t we just use gift bags for everything?”
Act Two. Actual magic happens, and all the stuff that was on the list actually gets done. No gifts get wrapped but mislabeled and accidentally given to the wrong person. No one gets sick during the holiday break and the weather is perfect with just the lightest snowfall and nothing whatsoever sticking to the ground or any surface. The wifi never goes out. The wine bottles are bottomless and none of the good glasses get broken. The kids remembered to say thank you without being prompted.
Take a deep breath. Do a few simple stretches and set the timer on the coffee pot. It’s time to start the show.