Good morning and welcome to Summit Up, the world’s only daily column hoping that everyone found what they wanted under their Christmas tree. We did, even though we had to buy it for ourselves, but hey, that way we got EXACTLY what we wanted.We realize that it’s not exactly PC anymore these days to even refer to “Christmas,” but truth be told, we are just plain tired of too much political correctness in the world. Just one small example: We were lucky enough to catch a music recital at one of the local schools a few days ago, and while the kids sang beautifully, we didn’t recognize a single song! Not one traditional carol, not one Jingle Bells, not a solitary Rudolph, not one measly Fa-la-La! What’s up with that? We LOVE those songs. Instead of totally ignoring the classics, maybe they could mix ’em in with some songs from other traditions and sort of mix things up. Just an idea …We hasten to add that we completely respect anyone who doesn’t celebrate Christmas, or who celebrates some other holiday instead. We are totally down with diversity and multiculturalism and we say, the more parties, the better. Bring it on! Kwanzaa, Hannukah … you name it, we’ll party with you, in a culturally respectful and sensitive way, of course.But still, if we had one of our Christmas wishes come true, we’d wake up on Christmas morn’ to find that Santa somehow magically managed to temper all that hyper-sensitivity with a little common sense. We here at Summit Up say that Christmas should be celebrated equally along with all other holidays, and that nobody should be ashamed to say “Merry Christmas” because they’re afraid it may offend someone else. So may we be among the first this morning to say: Merry Christmas! Now we’ll quickly and gracefully jump down off our soapbox and move on to other important holiday matters, like trying to figure out how to get these remnants of tape off our fingers from our ill-fated efforts professionally wrap presents. At least so says one of our staffers, who is slowly facing up to the reality that gift-wrapping just isn’t as easy as it looks. Some people have the knack, and others, well …This makes us think of our favorite Aunt, Erika, who can wrap presents so neatly and with so little tape that she can re-use the same wrapping paper year after year after year. In fact, she’ll shoot dirty looks at you if you rip the paper off the presents, because she is really intent on smoothing it out, folding it neatly and putting it away for next year. Now THAT’s recycling.This is the same aunt (God love her) who will look at your tree, take an ornament that you’ve just hung and move it over on the same branch by about 2 millimeters, then turn and give you a sweet smile and say, “Now that’s perfect!” This aunt has been known to spend hours and hours and hours re-arranging ornaments on a tree, after which we look at it and are convinced that it’s pretty much the same as before she started.Yep, that’s our aunt, who also used to call us “Mon petit chou” when we were little, which apparently is a term of endearment in French, but when we found out that it means “My little cabbage” we definitely weren’t all that psyched. But we love our aunt we wished she was around the other day when we were trying to wrap some ping pong paddles and balls. You see, we do OK with wrapping things like gift cards and DVDS, given their small size and regular dimensions. But when it comes to anything beyond that, look out. We didn’t have a box for the paddles, so the package ended up looking something like a gift-wrapped asteroid, all edgy and lumpy … Ahh well, we suppose there are some adult continuing education courses for gift-wrapping, but we really don’t want to go there.And along with paddles and balls, our staffer had to hide a ping pong table from an eager and inquisitive nine-year-old who was determined to guess every present in the house before Christmas. It’s a tough age. We don’t really think he believes in Santa anymore, but he feels like he has to at least pretend he believes, because you don’t want to take any chances, right?So, after drawing serious blood while setting up this “easy-to-assemble” item, we draped it with blankets, rags and old newspapers down in the garage and then came up with a list of creative reasons to keep the kid out of there. We can’t actually tell if it worked or not, but if that’s what it takes to keep them magic alive, then we are all for it.***We out, wadding up wrapping paper!
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