Well, we're almost a week into the whole "New Year's Resolution" deal. How's that working out for ya so far?
And just like that, first hmpf of 2013.
It's not that I don't want to make and keep resolutions. I, like so many of the rest of the humans on the third rock from the sun, truly begin each new year - indeed each new day - with the intent of being better, doing more, trying harder and basically aiming to improve myself and the world around me, overall.
But then, the sun comes up and it pretty much spirals downward from there.
Take, for instance, my Christmas tree. Please. I mean, really, I hope to heaven that thing is not still sitting at the curb on Good Friday. It's like, big. I don't know if it meets the code for trash delivery this year. Not to mention, I think it's possessed.
Allow me to explain. I began that January whatever-it-was with renewed enthusiasm and all the optimism muster-able on a drab winter's eve when suddenly - the dreaded de-decking of the halls commenced. Blech.
And so began Kimerer Kinfolk Quarrel No. 1 of the New Year. You didn't think I was going to steal the term "Family Feud," did you?
Anyhow, as the little snowmen and women, petite cherubs and stars, tiny picture frames, miniaturized snowmobiles, and their army of fellow bulbs, lights, and baubles (et al) sadly trudged back into their home for the next 10 1/2 months inside a gigantic rubber and plastic storage bin destined for basement dwelling, I noticed how naked the lone pine began to look.
And I think she noticed me noticing because I swear that tree sprang to life with more attitude than my teenage son when we asked him to help de-decorate, re-stack, tidy up and generally help us remove all evidence that Christmas had ever occurred.
Well, Penny Pine wasn't having it. This tree dug deep into the industrial-strength holder where she'd been tethered for the past month or so and refused to give up any ground. Carpet, either. I'm telling you, she was like Frosty coming to life - only not in a good way.
The more we tugged and pulled to remove her from her stand - and our lives - the more she refused to budge. At one point, I swear I saw her roots snake their way through the tree holder and wind up around the base of my grandmother's hope chest, clinging for dear life. Honest!
And the angrier we got, the harder she fought. As I struggled to restrain her still prickly limbs so Kerry could wrestle her out, she smacked me about the face and neck repeatedly. I still have sap in my hair.
Then, in one final act of defiance, she sneezed a small bush of needles onto the living room rug as we heaved her out the front door. To add injury to the insult, one of her tiny knife-like remnants stabbed Kerry in the toe. So much for the resolution not to curse.
Either way, who needs stupid live trees anyway? Hmpf. Makes you just want to forget about the holidays' period. Stressful right to the bitter end.
Third and final Christmas-related hmpf.
And then, just like a beacon over Bethlehem so many years ago, I saw the light. It seemed to be emanating from the solitary Christmas item I'd forgotten to pack away for the year - a tin red star basket with the words "Joy to the World" written in script on the belly side.
OK, I get it. The love and hope of Christmas can - and should -remain year round. In fact, as an olive branch to Penny Pine, I think I'll leave that little basket up for a bit longer.
Happy 2013! Let's all try to bring some joy to the world this year.
Kimerer is a Tribune Chronicle columnist. Contact her with ways to get pine needles out of carpet at email@example.com.