Merry Christmas! Unless you're that kid, who's been looking at Santa with dismay all week. Dad is lost in some private reverie, unaware that the white package is going to slip off and fall on the floor.

Busy Tuesday. Went to the Post Office to mail the Christmas cards, and discovered a line of people standing outside, which is never a good sign. CLOSED FROM 1 PM to 2 PM said the bad sign. But it was 1:59, so soon we'd be queued inside and enjoying some brisk stamping and mailing.

One clerk was telling the other that he should get that taken care of. It could give him a blood thing and it was right by his brain. (I'm paraphrasing.) Later I noted the afflicted clerk had his hand on his cheek, the universal sign of tooth-worrying. I asked if he had a bum peg, and he said he did.

"It's been hurting for about a year," he said.

Yes, you should get that taken care of. Yikes. I told him I'd had the same thing, and after one quick poke from the needle I felt nothing during the procedure. He seemed heartened. I didn't mention that the "quick poke" was like having a medieval jousting spear inserted into my jaw at the rate of half a millimeter every ten seconds, but he didn't need to hear that.

Walked over to the Nicollet Hotel site to take some video for Saturday's piece; it's a survey of some unbuit projects the city was lucky to avoid. Cold and raw; dank and gloomy. I don't think we've seen the sun for three weeks.

It's remarkable how you think back and wonder what's been missing, and think oh, right, blue skies and the bright orb, and realize you forget about the sun.

Or perhaps it has forgotten about you.

But you know: we'll meet again.


s Happy clerks and happy weary clerks. No frowns or grouses. (Grice?) I've been shopping every day, and have enjoyed it - but none so much as a few nights ago, when Daughter and I went to the grocery store late in the evening, and made fun of the products. I meant: if your leg or foot starts to ache after you've had this, don't say you weren't warned.

What warmed my heart was Daughter's past time: doing a Snapchat story of all the peculiar products she found, with sarcastic captions.

A family tradition!


  XMAS DINER 2014! If the player seems a little balky while loading, click on it. Worked for me. Also, if your TV reception is bad, bang on the top of the set.



The other day while driving around I was listening to the peppy rattle of nonsense put forth by Bill Stern the Colgate Man (he’s on the way / Bill Stern the Colgate Man has lots to say). It was a syndicated radio program that told sports stories in a snappy style, and half the anecdotes, if not more, are bunkem. It had Ezra Stone as a guest. He played a teenager on the radio. Wikipedia:

Ezra Stone . . . a dark-eyed Jewish kid . . . looked nothing at all like a gawky all-American boy next door in the studio audience's minds. Recalls (Jackie) Kelk (who played Henry's buddy Homer), "It was a big shock to people who came to see the show in the studio, because I looked more the (Henry Aldrich) part; I was slight and skinny. Ezra was this fat little man in a vest who smoked cigars."

Anyway: here's a sample of the sentimental codswallow the show peddled to Mr. & Mrs. America, and all the ships at sea:

Sell it, Ezra.

If that made you think they were overplaying things a bit, get a load of this.



Christmas cues from the cheerful jingly era of radio cigarette ads and other wonderful products. I suppose that calls for the special subbanner, doesn't it.

Red Letter Day! Give L&Ms for those who smoke the filter way.

Stop! Shop! Bright gay cartons satisfy.

Creepy twin voices insinuate the idea of flower gardens in winter.

Holiday cartons just for you.

Did you know? The Old Spice jingle had lyrics.

Caution! Don't drink and walk.

CBS suggests shopping early. Also: a Yardley gift set.

And that's it - except for a few restaurants. Have a wonderful Christmas Eve, and do check back tomorrow for a little tidbit.



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