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A Funny Christmas Story For People Having a Bad Day

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When four of Santa’s elves got sic and the trainee elves did not produce toys as quickly as the regular ones, Santa began to feel the pre-Christmas pressure.

When Mrs. Claus told Santa her mother was coming to visit, Santa got stressed out even more.

When he went to harness the reindeer, he found that three of them were about to give birth and two others had jumped the fence and were galloping about Heaven knows where.

Then, when he began to load the sleigh, one of the floorboards cracked, the toy bag fell to the ground and all the toys were scattered.

Frustrated, Santa went into the house for a cup of apple cider with a shot of rum. When he went to the cupboard, he discovered the elves had drunk all the cider and hidden the liquor. In his frustration, he accidentally dropped the cider jug, which broke into hundreds of little glass pieces all over the kitchen floor. He went to get the broom and found the mice had eaten all the straw off the end of the broom.

Just then the doorbell rang. An irritated Santa marched to the door, yanked it open, and there stood a little angel with a great big Christmas tree.

The angel said very cheerfully, ‘Merry Christmas, Santa. Isn’t this a lovely day? I have a beautiful tree for you. Where would you like me to stick it?’

And thus began the tradition of the little angel on top of the Christmas tree.

Bitter Tales: A Worm Composting Horror Story

Remember Cathy Parsons? She was volunteer driver extraordinaire at the St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival this past October. She taught me how to walk into people’s houses without knocking and we also tasted cod tongues for the first time together at Velmas.

Well, bless her little environmentally green and eco-conscious heart. Here’s a great tale of horror about her first weekend at home with her fresh batch of little worms.

A lesson to all would-be vermicomposters out there.

PS. No worms, pedestrians or vehicles were harmed in the telling of this story.

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[tags] semanal08, Cathy Parsons, Irene Duma, vermicomposting, worm composting, eco-living, environmentally friendly living, St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival [/tags]

Thanks To All You Naughty Friends Who Attended The Coal Lumper Party

We celebrated the season with all their naughty friends last week. Let’s see who’s on our list.

I see the Porkbelly Futures. That’s their second time on the list – good work Paul Quarrington, Martin Worthy, Chaz, Stu and Rebecca. Oh, and Teddy Leonard too.

The Gents are naughty too. That’s Bruce Pirrie, Bob Bainborough, Mark Baram and Doug Morency – and they are uber comedy stars of Canada. Patrick McKenna AKA “I have to be in every Canadian TV series”, is the 5th Gent, but he couldn’t make it because he was being “nice” in Hamilton at a charity event. Humbug.

Naughty. Yes. Going down the list we find Marty Adams – cast member of the much hoopla’d current Second City show “Facebook of Revelations.” Which we might add was directed by the aforementioned naughty Mr. Pirrie.

Oh – she calls herself a pilgrim, but don’t let her fool you. MC Sue Kenney is very, very naughty.

Judith Keenan was there of course. Naughty. With bells on.

And then there was me, the evening’s host, Irene Duma. 100% pure angel.

Thanks to all our guests who came out for the happening event. Yup – they were all mostly naughty too.

And big sloppy thank yous to : The Gladstone Hotel, Come As You Are (701 Queen Street West, Toronto ) and Inniskillin wines.

Without you we are nothing. Or just kind of bored.

How Prozac Saved My Marriage

A true story by Tanya Kowalsky

I used to be a real horror to live with. I nagged, and pestered Walter constantly trying to get him to pick up after himself, to get a job, or even just to acknowledge me when I spoke to him. But nothing seemed to work. Instead he just spent more time in front of the TV, drinking beer and sorting his fishing tackle.

I was getting more and more unhappy. My mother tried to console me by saying that at least he didn’t cheat on me, but it only brought tears to my eyes. I yelled at myself for not being Christian enough to forget about those flings with the Hooter girls.

I turned to our priest, who said I should be more womanly and generous, so, I volunteered at the local old age home. Sure it was nice getting out of the house, and I managed to earn a bit of money beating the residents at poker, but I still didn’t feel better.

It got so bad that I thought of leaving him, but thankfully my mother reminded me that no man is going to want a used woman. Heavens, I can only imagine what trouble I could have gotten myself into. Plus, I had the children to think about, too.

Then one day while I was re-shingling the roof, I spotted our 3 year old Alex chasing a ball onto the street with a car coming straight towards him. I dropped my hammer, leaped to the nearest Maple tree bough, swung over the fence and landed on the neighbours trash cans which softened my fall. When I finally rushed out into the street, the car had seen Alex and managed to stop. Alex was OK – this time. But I knew something had to be done – my mothering capabilities had been affected.

With every ounce of passion left in me I decided to try everything in my power to make the relationship work.

I asked Walter to come to couple counseling, but he said the problem was me, that all he wanted was a woman to cook for him and to clean his underwear, and that I was making things so complicated.

So, I decided to go alone. I picked up the phone and made an appointment.

Sure, I was scared – nobody had ever been crazy in my family before. But you have to understand, it was my last hope.

Dr. Thicke wasn’t kind or nice, but his gruffness and lack of interest in me as a human only assured me of his competence as a scientist.

I told him how I felt – that after a brief romance and courtship – a dance at the local hall and a dinner at Taco Bell – Walter and I fell in love. But things changed quickly after that. He paid less and less attention to me, demanded dinners be served in front of the TV, and started referring to me only as “woman.”

I thought this would change after we married – that if I kept the house tidy, got silicon implants and produced 2 perfect children, he’d come to appreciate me. But it only got worse – his friends were over almost every night to watch the game. I couldn’t bring out the beer and perogies fast enough for them all.

Then when the children were born, the distance grew even wider. Walter believed children were women’s work, and instead he spent his time in the garage polishing his vintage Camarro that he had bought with the trust fund I had saved for the children’s education. ( Which I’m not bitter about – I couldn’t say anything- I was in the hospital recovering from a Caesarian and I missed his birthday.)

I didn’t have to go say any more – Dr. Thicke looked up from the TV guide he was reading and said that I shouldn’t worry – he had seen this before and that it was common. I was suffering from depression.

Then he told me that depression is a disease suffered mostly by women, it makes us cranky and listless and a drag to be around. If I wanted to end my family’s suffering, I should go on antidepressants.

I was so relieved – all these years I had thought that Walter was the problem, that his contempt for me was just a symptom of his misogynistic beliefs and our society’s insistence on devaluing women.

But in fact, it turns out I was the problem. I was just too negative. I took the prescription without a moment’s hesitation.

Within weeks things had changed dramatically, I skipped gaily through my chores, I sang while I scrubbed the toilet, attended to all my family’s whims and fancies, and taught the old fogies at the home how to line dance.

Walter still didn’t talk to me or seem to have any interests in me, the kids or the house, – the difference was now I just didn’t care. The antidepressants had effectively prevented me from feeling any of the effects of life. I didn’t have to hurt after all. The marriage was saved.

Thank you Prozac, Dr. Thicke, and all the other doctors, scientists and pharmaceutical companies for changing my life. I couldn’t be unhappy now if I tried.

“How Prozac Saved My Marriage” first appeared in and was published in “The Language Of Argument.”