1.04.2008

The Card Nazi...

When I was a kid, my mom had a system. It was a system of weeding out lazy Christmas card givers. Each year she would write down a check mark in her handy dandy notebook if she received a card from you. She would compare this checked list to the list of people that she sent cards to... if you did not send a card to my mother in three year's time you were knocked off of her Christmas card list faster than a speeding bullet. My mother did not fool around with this. She was serious about the time old moral tradition of receiving in order to give... or something like that.

Well, as my Christmas card list get larger... the number of cards we receive gets fewer and fewer.

Do people not like me? Am I annoying? (please do not answer those questions in my comment box.)

Is it the high cost of stamps and the fear of getting shot at the post office that keeps people from sending out Christmas greetings?

I don't know, but I have had enough! I decided to monitor our Christmas cards this year. I sent to everyone on my list (I apologize for not sending out Christmas letters to all of you who emailed me... it was getting expensive and I had to decide between you and a Christmas ham. The Ham won.)

I printed out my Christmas list and got out my red pen and started checking away. Now I have come to a dilemma. Do I stop sending to my Great Aunt on my Father's side who is blind and deaf because she has not sent me a card is 3 years, or do I keep her on-even though she can't read my letter and she can't hear it when someone else reads it to her. Hmmm. And what about my mother-in-law who seems to think she is exempt from sending out a Christmas greeting... do I knock her off the list as well? What about childhood friends who have stopped sending cards and some distant cousins of whom I have never met and have not received a card from them since 1993? Do I say "so long sucker" to them?

As I was sorting through my list I realized that I may very well have been discarded from their list for some unknown reason. It was not because I stopped sending cards to them, it was apparently because they want me to stop sending to them!

Next year it looks like my list will consist of the neighbor's dog (who left a nice Christmas greeting on my front lawn) and my college, who sent me a nice Christmas greeting with a plea for money.

Thank God it is January and I can stop being to cheery. No Card For You!

14 comments:

Momto5Minnies said...

I loved that you analyzed the Christmas card dilemma ... to send or skip.

My list has changed a lot over the years. I went a lot longer with some people then finally cut them off. After a while I wondered if they had no idea who I was. Really, do I want to send a card of my children's faces to people who do not ever call, write, or send a card? I'll just exploit my children (minus their names) on the web thank you!

Marva said...

Cris,

I LOVED this blog! We've been talking about the same thing around here. I'm starting to get a complex because we didn't receive Christmas cards from many of our "so-called friends." I'm going to become Scrooge!

Michelle said...

Question--if you get the "Christmas Letter" after Christmas does that still count?

Although Christmas falls the at the same time each year--we can't seem to get our annual letter out until after Christmas day! Now back in the day when I was doing it, it was a different story BUT since I've passed that on to my other half--I'm just thankful it gets done each year despite the reminders: "you are going to work on the Christmas letter before you watch that game right?"

For some reason the cards/letter were alot less than in the years past. I'm hoping when they get our "Christmas Letter" in January they will a)send us a note immediately or b)remember to send us a card next year. I've also decided that we will be sending a Happy New Year letter vs a Christmas letter from now on so we don't look like the procrastinators HE is!

Your FAV neighbor who you are going to miss SO MUCH when you are in that COLD as ICE state--Nebraska,
Michelle "-)

finicky said...

Well, that's an interesting dilemma to say the least. For me this falls in the crap category for Christmas stuff though. But, I won't let my general disdain for these types of shenanigans at Christmas influence you negatively. So how about a little story instead?

Last year, I sent out all of our Christmas cards all by myself. (Yes, I'm a husband. So to me this is a big deal, thank you.) I removed some rather generic, corporate marketing cards from the "Basura" bin at the billion-dollar company for which I work. I then went to CVS, printed about 60 pictures of my two kids with Santa, inserted the pics into the cards, sealed and addressed each one, and stuck 'em in the mail. I was proud as a peacock! I never told my wife and just knew she'd be happy and proud that I went to so much effort. After all, with as much as she takes on at Christmas time, this is one less thing for her to worry about, right? It was only when everyone came over to our house for Christmas that I realized... something was a foot. Something was stirring about the gossip circles in my house... there were comments about the cards and pictures I sent out. Apparently, my handiwork was nulled and negated by the fact that I didn't "sign" the cards, or write a nice little Christmas note on the inside of the cards... I demanded that my wife tell me who was making these horrible comments, but she never would tell me who. She only told me what they said, in a general way that I could understand. I was horrified and offended. My feelings had been hurt! I must admit that I've been harboring this resentment all year in 2007 - but I don't know who made the comments about my cards. I threatened to some of my friends that if I could find out who complained, that they'd receive the exact same card and picture this year that I sent to them last year, (as I have plenty left over). But, no dice. I still don't know who they are. So this year, about two weeks before Christmas I declared that I would not send out cards this year or any other year, ever again - ever. I guess I showed everybody huh? I'm sure this will go down in the "My husband is a dumbass at Christmas" chapter in our big book of blame.

The only OTHER thing I have completely sworn off in this fashion is cutting birthday cake. Never again!

Hope said...

I used to make it a habit of looking for a picture of the holy family and sending out a bajillion. Last year I was to banged up to send cards and this year all my stamps went on mail overseas...I like it better and I didnt miss all the "okay what the hell do I do with all these cards now? dilemma...it was good.

Heather said...

Ok, this is just too funny! I have felt the same way lately! I'm ready to check off a few on my normal list too. Funny though how you have certain people, mostly family members, that can forego sending you a card, but if you send one to their sibling or niece, who took the time and energy to send one to you, you just suck and the whole family hears about it. I'm getting out my red pen!

Steph said...

OMG this is hilarious! Mostly because you are writing about me! I have a spreadsheet that I log each year, and people are falling off left and right. Not sure what's up, but this year we definitely did NOT get as many greetings as we usually do. I think I'm gonna let 'em slide this year, because there was apparently something in the air that kept people from getting to the PO.

Cris said...

Finicky-I had to laugh out loud when you said you would never cut a birthday cake again. I have a certain way to cut the cake to ensure there are more pieces-more bang for the buck. My husband attempted this once and he is never allowed to do it again. It looked like a crime scene.

the Mom said...

Cris,
How do you cut it? We need descriptive instructions and diagrams. We have a huge family, but my mother still uses the same small cake pan from when there were five family members. So, please share the secret.

Love,
the Mom

mel said...

I quit sending Christmas cards because the only cards I ever get are from...

...two die-hard organized homeschooling families who have befriended me even though I am the most unorganized person on earth...

...our parish priest, who sends one out to all parishoners.

I thought I would get back to it and send cards this year, just because it's a nice thing to do, but I never got around to it (see "most unorganized person on earth" comment above).

Amy said...

I could be your mom! Not literally, but I use the 3 year rule as well. I thought I made it up but maybe it is some long lost piece of wisdom from my grandma. I don't know. But it works!

finicky said...

Yes - I created a 'crime scene' when I cut my wife's cake that year too. I can relate. But I think I sealed my fate as someone they will never look to again for such a task. No one knows how hard it is until they try it. :-)

Peggy Sez.. said...

Geez and I thought I started that trend..lol.Back in the day I would hand pick cards for EVERYONE.Did I receive anything even remotely as cool? NO! So I too implemented the "Three Year Rule" my list dwindled from 40 plus cards to 3How sad is that?

Family O'Foxes said...

How about you just send out "lovie" valentines and just dump the Christmas greetings. That is so last year! This year the "Valentine!" :)

~Amy