Christmas Illustrated

As a general rule, it's the thought that counts. There are limits to this.
Share |

My family's epic and enviable thoughtfulness at Christmas—one part woodworking, one part album-making, one part Red Sox tickets, one part sentimentality—puts me in a perennial funk on December 23rds. It's too late by now to match them, to patch together an iMovie chronicling my father's early life, or quilt my mom a steering wheel cover using cloth from my old baby blanket, or secure for my older brother Stephen that walk-on part on Game of Thrones he really wants.

That anxiety began in earnest when I was 15 and attempted my first late-in-the-season thoughtful gift in hopes of, somehow, reaching their level of generosity. Not an ornament or a terrible mystery novel, this time. This thoughtful gift was going to be a life-changing, rim-rattling slam-dunk, even though it sprang from the foggy-headed desperation of a late-night December 23rd. I wouldn’t even have to buy anything.

Stephen loves sports, I figured, especially the Red Sox. So, hoping to produce a meaningful, personal, conveniently interest-based, hug-inducing, memory-clinching, kudos-generating, doorknob-punch-preventing, Christ-delighting whopper of a gift, I took out the Scotch tape and got going. I would make him a poster of nostalgia.

I gathered up all the pertinent Sports Illustrateds—Stephen kept them in a dusty basement closet, in order. Larry Bird, Mo Vaughn. Inexplicably, there was no cover featuring Irving Fryar, but I figured I’d make do. There were a half-dozen Roger Clemens’s and, brilliantly, a new Pedro Martinez cover. Three versions of Kathy Ireland also made their residence in that closet, but I was on a mission, and kept my eyes on the task at hand.

Pedro had recently been traded from the Expos and his picture, with the word "Amazing" emblazoned in white, seemed a gift-wrapped theme in itself. It would surely make an AMAZING gift when taped to other images.

As I constructed, I got a little pastiche-happy. Instead of taping entire covers together, I started scissoring-in curves to make an athletic mosaic out of our shared heroes. Then I'd emphasize certain words from the covers. "Memories” was one. Using ransom note-style cut-outs to spell out "BeSt GiFt EVer" or “SpOrTs HaS CEmenTed OuR FRaterNal bOnd” might have been more subtle.

When I was finished, I had a 24X36 masterpiece of frankly horrifying crap—ugly tape overlaps, ripped edges, sticky address labels still adorning Oil Can Boyd’s face. It was something a television cop might find on the wall of a serial killer’s hovel, provided that serial killer listened to a lot of WEEI. And, in creating this deeply felt monstrosity, I'd tarnished the jewels of my brother's allowance-sapping sports memorabilia collection, leaving coverless magazines naked in my wake. I was pleased with myself at the time. I allowed myself a quick glance of Ms. Ireland circa 1994 as a reward and went off to watch the second half of The Motor City Bowl.

I didn't realize that night that the present would come up short in the end—just like those New England teams it depicted: the ’88 and ’90 and ’95 Red Sox; the ’91 Celtics; Billy Curley’s Tarheel-stomping Boston College basketball team. I knew, Christmas morning, that my ragged poster hadn't thrilled my brother as much as I'd hoped, but that was a customary Christmas let-down for me, even by that point. Because he was kind (or because my parents were), we hung it on our basement wall anyway.

My mistake, my regret, grew in scope for about five years, and each time I'd come home from college, clamber down the basement stairs and see the poster’s Frankenstein leer on the wall, I’d feel more and more how boneheaded a present it had been. An anti-present really: I took things he liked and alchemized them into something he probably didn't. Clemens had actually given him the same feeling when he signed with the Blue Jays the year before I made the Roger-collage.

I'm making up for all of that this year. Stephen's getting something really good. It's going to be—I mean, it's going to cause great surprise and wonder, be startlingly impressive; astonishing, astounding, stunning, staggering. AMAZING, even. As soon as I think of it.

Maybe I’ll give him a framed Luis Rivera Topps Gold card. You know Luis Rivera. Light-hitting Sox shortstop of the early 1990s, currently the Blue Jays third-base coach? Stephen and I used to tease him and root for him to clear .250. This will be perfect. Luis Rivera was pretty much my favorite player growing up.


Share |

Comments

Thanks for ones marvelous posting! I genuinely enjoyed reading it, you are a great author. I will be sure to bookmark your blog and may come back very soon. I want to encourage you to definitely continue your great job, have a nice weekend.
Accountants London

This is a fantastic website and I can not recommend you guys enough. I really appreciate your post. It is very helpful for all the people on the web.
Accountants Lingfield

You actually make it look so easy with your performance but I find this matter to be actually something which I think I would never comprehend. It seems too complicated and extremely broad for me. I'm looking forward for your next post, I’ll try to get the hang of it!Japanese vehicle exporter

http://healthtips247.com/erectile-dysfunction-protocol-review/ Cool you write, the information is very good and interesting, I'll give you a link to my site. http://www.hrtonline.org/erase-herpes-eliminate-herpes-virus/

Wow! Such an amazing and helpful post this is. I really really love it. It's so good and so awesome. I am just amazed. I hope that you continue to do your work like this in the future also.www.kcentv.com

You might comment on the order system of the blog. You should chat it's splendid. Your blog audit would swell up your visitors. I was very pleased to find this site.I wanted to thank you for this great read!! http://www.24-7pressrelease.com/press-release/3-week-diet-review-does-brian-flatts-weight-loss-diet-work-406129.php

Three versions of Kathy Ireland also made their residence in that closet, but I was on a mission, and kept my eyes on the task at hand.dental implants leicester

Took me time to understand all of the comments, but I seriously enjoyed the write-up. It proved being really helpful to me and Im positive to all of the commenters right here! Its constantly nice when you can not only be informed, but also entertained! I am certain you had enjoyable writing this write-up.Import cars from japan

It's superior, however , check out material at the street address.
Digital media planning

So lot to occur over your amazing blog. Your blog procures me a fantastic transaction of enjoyable.. Salubrious lot beside the scene.
web developers london

This is very appealing, however , it is very important that will mouse click on the connection:
support education

Here you will learn what is important, it gives you a link to an interesting web page:
Movie Tube

Then I'd emphasize certain words from the covers. "Memories” was one. Using ransom note-style cut-outs to spell out "BeSt GiFt EVer" or “SpOrTs HaS CEmenTed OuR FRaterNal bOnd” might have been more subtle.
lebanon escorts

That anxiety began in earnest when I was 15 and attempted my first late-in-the-season thoughtful gift in hopes of, somehow, reaching their level of generosity. Escorts lebanon

And, in creating this deeply felt monstrosity, I'd tarnished the jewels of my brother's allowance-sapping sports memorabilia collection, leaving coverless magazines naked in my wake. I was pleased with myself at the time. I allowed myself a quick glance of Ms. Ireland circa 1994 as a reward and went off to watch the second half of The Motor City Bowl.
escorts in beirut

My family's epic and enviable thoughtfulness at Christmas—one part woodworking, one part album-making, one part Red Sox tickets, one part sentimentality—puts me in a perennial funk on December 23rds. It's too late by now to match them escorts in lebanon

I started scissoring-in curves to make an athletic mosaic out of our shared heroes. Then I'd emphasize certain words from the covers. "Memories” was one. Using ransom note-style cut-outs to spell out "BeSt GiFt EVer" or “SpOrTs HaS CEmenTed OuR FRaterNal bOnd” might have been more subtle.
exchange brazil coins

Clemens had actually given him the same feeling when he signed with the Blue Jays the year before I made the Roger-collage.joann fabrics coupons

I like viewing web sites which comprehend the price of delivering the excellent useful resource free of charge. I truly adored reading your posting. Thank you! Bedding sale

I should assert barely that its astounding! The blog is informational also always fabricate amazing entitys.
injustice game hack

Your blogs further more each else volume is so entertaining further serviceable It appoints me befall retreat encore. I will instantly grab your feed to stay informed of any updates.duvet sets uk

monster legends dicas I understand this column. I realize You put a many of struggle to found this story. I admire your process. cheat clash of clans

Though you make some VERY fascinating points, you're going to have to do more than bring up a few things that may be different than what we've already heard. What are trying to say here best free bets

Pretty good post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. Any way I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon.Buy phentermine uk