A Christmas Story

Tuesday, 25 December 2001, 6:33 am
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I like to do my shopping on Christmas Eve. It helps me feel solidarity with all the other fathers and husbands who venture out just 12 hours before Christmas hoping to find the perfect present in the 10 minutes before all the stores close.

“A battery operated swizzle stick! I know she wanted diamond earrings but… it’s perfect. Do you gift wrap?”

Abby and I went to our local outlet mall where we bought such useful items as a magnetic clothes pin and a cheese fondue set. What’s with all the fondue sets? Is fondue back? Or is it just that I’m shopping the remainder bins?

Then we headed downtown where I bought a gift certificate for a swedish rock massage (as opposed to, Abba, a Swedish rock group) and a level four transformer toy. Guess which family member each was for.

I was surprised how crowded everything was. I guess I’m not the only dad who waits to the last minute. I did catch a break at the grocery store when, as I froze trying to calculate which checkout line was moving fastest, one of the clerks shouted, “hey Screen Savers! over here!” Celebrity has its privileges. I guess.

Tonight we brought Christmas cookies to neighbors, then drove around looking at the over-the-top Christmas decor. One of the houses even had its own radio station – a micropower FM station broadcasting Christmas music – and a sign saying “tune to 88.1.”

I hope we’ll get a chance sometime this week to watch my favorite Christmas movie, Jean Shepherd’s “A Christmas Story.” I grew up listening to Jean on the radio, WOR in NYC, and still idolize him. He passed away in 1999 but you can still hear him on Live 365.

Well the presents are all under the tree, and Santa has hung the stockings with care, so I better get to bed. Abby is getting a drum set tomorrow. I have a feeling I’ll be up early.

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.

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16 Responses to “A Christmas Story”

  1. Anonymous on December 25th, 2001 6:53 am

    Yep, finished my Christmas shopping tonight, as well. That’s just how we do it. What a great Father; Drums.. Man, I am so glad I will not be in the Laporte household tomorrow morning. Hope you picked up some ear plugs at your mall, as well. You may need them. :)

    All the best, to you and your family.

    Merry Christmas.

  2. Anonymous on December 25th, 2001 6:54 am

    Merry Xmas Leo…. You ARE THE MAN!

    Thanks for many, many years of help and advice!

    I’ve been around since your radio dayz…. man that dates me :)

    Ian

  3. Anonymous on December 25th, 2001 7:09 am

    TSS OWNZ!

  4. Anonymous on December 25th, 2001 7:17 am

    Leo=

    Drums… God be with you!! My little brother started playing a sax and life has never been the same since!! It is something that brings some entertainment around (… I wish my parents would have been more motivating to make me practice… I hope the holidays found you and your family in good spirit… Have a happy and safe new year… I have a favor to ask and that is if you could drop me an e-mail… That would really make my day… Thanks

    Chris

  5. Anonymous on December 25th, 2001 8:17 am

    Drums are cool. I got drums for Christmas when I turned 13. By 11:30 am my dad told me I couldn’t play them in the house anymore. So off to the garage I went. It’s no fun playing the drums in 20 degrees. (I live in Idaho) Anyways, Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!! God Bless

  6. Anonymous on December 25th, 2001 10:05 am

    I hope we’ll get a chance sometime this week to watch my favorite Christmas movie, Jean Shepherd’s “A Christmas Story.”

    Lucky for you, TNT is showing “A Christmas Story” for 24 hours … but, you don’t have a TV! D’oh!

    In the spirit of Christmas (better late then never), watch your mail for a little something from yours truly. Yes, friends … whenever you wonder what to get for the man you know little about, read his blog! ;o)

    Merry Christmas, everyone!

  7. Anonymous on December 25th, 2001 10:41 am

    Merry Christmas Leo! we all love the show! you and patrick rule!

  8. Anonymous on December 25th, 2001 11:15 am

    Unlike most of the males out there, I actually had my gifts bought early this year (putting that in my record book). I guess working at a retail store helps you find gifts easier. Anyways Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all leoville blogers.

    Bill Schulze

  9. Anonymous on December 25th, 2001 12:04 pm

    Merry Christmas. I’m getting my 1 yr old nephew a small toy drum for Christmas. I’m sure my brother and his wife will really like that today. :)

  10. Anonymous on December 25th, 2001 1:21 pm

    Merry Christmas to you and your family Leo, and to all on the blog.

    I have seen “A Christmas Story” 4 times so far this season. It is truly a classic and brings back many memories of family holidays of the 60s’. Miracle on 34th St is my favorite Christmas movie though. No new-fangled color version though, give me the B/W one. I just love Maureen O’Hara and John Payne. Natalie Wood was incredible as she was working on three different movies at the same time and had only recently given up her Russian name for the stage name Natalie Wood. It must have been hard for a little girl to keep it all straight.

    When we were little, my parents never wrapped our presents from Santa, they just laid them out all around the living room. With me and two older brothers, there was always loot everywhere, especially if we all got new bicycles. It was very extravagant, but I will remember those mornings always. Now, I can truly appreciate how much those mornings cost them throughout the coming year.

    Cheryl

  11. Anonymous on December 25th, 2001 2:51 pm

    Merry Christmas, Leo!

    A drum set for Abby? Lucky girl! And it’s a gift the whole family (+ the goats) will “enjoy”!

    Hey Screen Savers! LOL!!

    It isn’t Christmas to me until I see Heat Miser and Snow Miser do their numbers. Lucky for me, I caught it last night!!

  12. Anonymous on December 25th, 2001 3:36 pm

    Happy Howlidays all!!! Leo will you adopt me!! I always wanted drums growing up!!

    What did St. Nick bring the rest of you. I got a new dryer (gags I hate being a responsible adult sometimes), and new and improved web hosting for one of my web sites.

    Hubby got a Pioneer DEH-P7300 complete with animated graphics to boot.

    The dog made out like a bandit .. she got tons of loot!!!

    I hope that you all have a great holiday and very happy new year’s!!

    LOUPY

  13. Anonymous on December 25th, 2001 4:45 pm

    Merry Christmas Leo…

    Glad your kids (and wife) got everything they could hope for.

    My wife got me your book, but now I can’t get it away from her.

    Happy Holidays and enjoy the time off with your family. You deserve it!

  14. Anonymous on December 25th, 2001 5:07 pm

    Drums!! Where were you when my brother and I wanted those? Are you adopting? My parents compromised and let me buy a guitar. Muuahahahaaha!

    My favorite Christmas movie was on last night: “It’s a Wonderful Life”. ::sniffle::

    Have fun with the fondue and the massage. ;-)

  15. Anonymous on January 1st, 2002 3:23 pm

    You’re gonna put your eye out, Ralphie!

    Hey, Leo, the present I got for my Mom for Christmas (besides your book) was a set of cassette tapes from Ebay, from early 1965 of Jean Shepherd (complete!) radio programs… the quality is unbelievably good! I spent Christmas playing with my Mom’s presents, sneaking peeks at your book when she wasn’t looking, and then listening to her tapes! They are just a teensy bit dated, but his genius really shines, what a national treasure he was. If you remember the show where he talked about his interest in Ham Radio, and Mark Twain, (yes, he tied those two things together!) it really blew me away… there is no one out there now doing anything close to the amazing story telling of Jean Shepherd, although my favorite, Norm Nathan was a close second, and alas, he too, has left us.

    Interested folks can check out Ebay, where there are listings for audio cassettes and also MP3 files of the old Jean Shepherd radio programs. The guy I purchased from is called “baby dog” on ebay, the quality is amazing on the tapes he sent me.

  16. Pre Lit Christmas Tree on November 19th, 2008 8:17 am

    I was surprised how crowded everything was. I guess I’m not the only dad who waits to the last minute. I did catch a break at the grocery store when, as I froze trying to calculate which checkout line was moving fastest, one of the clerks shouted, “hey Screen Savers! over here!” Celebrity has its privileges. I guess.

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