Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from the Percy Keats Shelleys!
The year 2018 certainly has been an eventful one for our family, and this cherished season is even more joyful now that we can all say “Merry Christmas” again.
The other day a young woman said “Happy holidays!” to us in the Walmart parking lot, so the kids gave her the finger while I swerved like I was going to run her over. She moved impressively fast, and I swear her little boy could grow up to be another Evil Knievel, the way his stroller jumped that curb.
Speaking of kids, our daughter Ashley still is living in our basement with her new boyfriend, who swears his name is Pinocchio Dynamite. He tells us he’s earning his keep by “cleaning the pipes,” yet we never see him do any plumbing.
Ashley’s twin daughters Holly and Dolly are in her old bedroom next to ours, because we are afraid of what they might see were they downstairs with their mother.
Ashley also brought her new dog Porky, a Yorkie.
Porky the Yorkie went into heat soon after her arrival, and our boxer Buster got to her – in the basement, fortunately, and not where the girls could see.
So now we have a litter of puppies with surrealistically giant heads and tiny bodies, like characters come to life from a 1950s cartoon matinee.
“Yip! Yip! Yippee!” they bark, like they’re cheering in tiny munchkin voices, as if they used to be human before some evil witch put a curse on the them.
This is giving the twins nightmares, for which my wife Babs, who swears she will stab me in the neck with my insulin shot if I don’t call her “Barbara,” tried giving them a prescription sleep aid. But don’t tell anyone that because it’s illegal.
It worked, in a way: The girls quit having nightmares. Instead they started sleepwalking, hand in hand, looking eerily like the evil ghost twins who haunt the empty hotel in the movie “The Shining.”
The other night I thought I heard a prowler, and when I stepped into the hall and flipped on the light, they were standing right in front of me, staring into my eyes with cold-hearted indifference. Fortunately the bullet went clean between them when I screamed and accidentally discharged my AR-15.
Also on a positive note, the errant shot took out the Elf on the Shelf in their bedroom, which was freaking us out because each morning we noticed it had assumed a new pose overnight, sometimes an obscene one, and the shelf’s too high for the girls to reach.
Babs is learning a second language with Gustave, her private tutor, whom she meets twice a week while I’m at work. She has told me that I’m not allowed to call or text during their sessions because they need privacy to focus on fluency, and that’s why they rented a loft apartment.
In a spirit of generosity and cheer, I bought a speedboat and didn’t tell her, just to see if she would notice. And she did, when I got drunk and fell out at full throttle, and the boat crashed into our dock and set it afire.
We can’t let such misfortune weigh heavily upon us, this time of year, so I stay positive and remember it’s a good thing I put a lot of money down, because only two years of monthly payments remain.
Luckily we’ve paid off the 42-inch flat-screen TV that Babs got on Black Friday after she bested another shopper. He was a large man, so the twins and I were proud of her, and even Pinocchio gave her a fist-dap.
But the store manager called the police because he said she didn’t have to keep hitting the guy with his own walker.
Anyway, she’s to be released on her own recognizance today, and just like in the song she can say, “I’ll be home for Christmas.”
So may the spirit of the season lift your heart like a trashcan of hope, and may your days be bright as a lit cigarette tossed out a car window on a lonely road in the dead of night.
The Percy Keats Shelleys – Bill, Barbara, Ashley, Holly, Dolly, Pinnochio, Buster, Porky and the pups.