I now have a new and deep insight into some of the neurosis that is my psyche. I enter the following into evidence:
I realize that driving around, taking in the holiday decorations and ooohing and awwwing is an American tradition. And, sure, we all have our own opinions on whether or not we like this or that display. I, personally, enjoy the more traditional looking homes but I also appreciate inventiveness and creativity. My brother, on the other hand, likes it loud, bright, gaudy and glittering. Think Clark W. Griswold in Christmas Vacation.
This year, my family was making our way to the annual trip to The Nutcracker. We see it every year, at the same theatre, performed by the same company, and eat a pre-theatre meal at the same restaurant. Because my family is NOTHING if not a slave to tradition. And, on our way from restaurant to theatre, we take the back roads.
Here's a snippet of the conversation during said drive through beautiful, picturesque neighborhoods.
Scene: Large house on a hill, lit by white candles and twinkly white lights.
Mom: "Isn't that lovely!"
Dad: "Big houses. Must cost a fortune."
Scene: Two story home, outlined in colored lights
Mom: I really don't like when people just line their houses like that. It seems so tacky.
Dad: Well, they have no imagination. It's low-effort decorating. Just a few strings of lights, some staples and you're done.
Scene: Trees in front of home draped in multi-colored lights in large, looping arcs.
Dad: Ugh. I hate that. It seems so willy-nilly.
Mom: It's almost like they just toss the strings up over the branches and who cares where they land. Really, they could put SOME effort into it.
Scene: Old oaks in front of a house wrapped, root to tips, in tiny white lights.
Dad: I really don't like that look.
Mom: I don't either. Why would you want to outline a bare tree? They probably leave the lights up all year anyway.
If you've been through even half the therapy I've been through (and here's hoping you haven't had to be!) you would also sit back and observe all of this with wonder and awe appropriate for this holiday season.
I could wax on with psychobabble and therapy language here, but that would just be overkill.