Saturday, December 17, 2005

you're a mean one

I am not the Grinch. I am the Exorcist.
I must stay focused.

Our parish secretary thinks I'm the Grinch. She wants me to admit it.
She scatters little tufts of green fur around the office and stares at me with lifted brow as if to insinuate that I'm shedding.

She tortures me with innuendo.
If I am the Grinch, she is Big Nurse.

See, we get all these Christmas presents from kind folks and opulent parishes outside the city. We, in turn, give these presents out to the not-so-prosperous families in our neck of the woods. Urban jungle.

I approve of this. I would make it a year round deal. But Christmas spirit wanes quickly once the new year starts. So we make the most of it now. I am not the Grinch.

My only input to this whole gift-giving frenzy has been to ask our secretary to compile a list of all the people who are to benefit from it. I put no limit, no conditions on who gets the goodies. I simply think we should be transparent and accountable. Hence the list.

See that? I make lists. I check them twice.
I have a lot more in common with St. Nick than I do with that green hairball of a party pooper.

But our fine secretary is reticent. She will have nothing to do with lists. She keeps it all in her head. I do not doubt her capacity to do that, but I find it woefully unhelpful.

So now my fetish with Christmas lists is being recast as an impious assault on the holiday itself.

I have been left to cower in the sacristy, afraid to face the tearful, innocent eyes of Cindy Lou Who, who was no more than two.