With the holiday cheer starting as early as September these days, some times it can be hard to keep up the enthusiasm all the way through the end of the December. Don’t worry, these books get it!
Augusten Burroughs introduced the world to his fascinatingly…unique (well, that’s an understatement) childhood in his memoir, Running with Scissors. With a quack doctor father figure who reads the future in turds placed on the dining room table, you know Augusten had to have experienced some pretty kooky Christmases. Maybe your mom and uncle have had it out over the Christmas ham, but you probably haven’t been inspired to gnaw the face off of a six-foot wax Santa. We didn’t think so!
Have you ever wanted to know how Holland celebrates what they refer to as “St. Nicholas Day”? David Sedaris has. So he asked. The result is the hilarious story “Six to Eight Black Men” (which I simply must recommend you also listen to on audiobook with Sedaris’s dry-as-hell delivery), in which the Holland-ese (?) St. Nicholas uses, you guessed it, six to eight black men, not elves, to help him deliver his presents to all the good boys and girls. Apparently the bad ones get a solid stick beating. That’s at least a little more interesting than all this American Prancer and Blitzen hooey…right?
Lewis Black does not like A LOT of things, and the yuletide season is definitely no different. Known for just being hilariously pissed-off all year ’round, Black ruminates on the things he hates the most about Christmastime in particular. If you’re sick of the wintry chill in the air and the holiday cheer (blech, humbug), then you’ll certainly appreciate Black’s tirades against shopping, trees, carols, and why we can’t get some goddamn stockings for Chanukkah too, hmm?!
Even more essays by iconic authors about the yearly trauma of the holiday season! Augusten Burroughs is a magnet for the surreal and outright wackadoodle, whereas these pieces poke fun at more commonplace Christmas happenings, whether that means turning the played-out “Gift of the Magi” on its head, lamenting the trials and tribulations of a December birthday, or how to celebrate the Christmas season as a Jew. Does the phrase “ham disaster” entice?
Cover image c/o Flickr