Welcome back to Giant Electric Penguin's very special holiday edition of Dear GEP. It's not too late to get your holiday conundrums solved by me, your editor-in-chief, a fully-licensed expert on holiday minutia with a BA in Advanced Christmas Studies. Just send your questions to the above e-mail address. Or don't. I've got plenty of questions to answers, I just thought I'd give you a chance to get in on the fun. You don't have to be a jerk about.
I'm pretty sure my Elf on the Shelf is trying to kill me. He told me his name is Charles Lee Ray, and, last night, he murdered my babysitter, Empty Nest star Dinah Manoff, by pushing her out the window. I'm super scared, and I'm pretty sure he's not reporting my good behavior to Santa Claus. What should I do?
You ever heard the phrase "don't shampoo a shampooer?" I'm on to you and your phony letter, bub! You've just described the plot--and not even particularly well, I might add--to 1988's Child's Play, probably my third favorite movie of all time after Child's Play 2 and Amelie. You're Elf on the Shelf isn't possessed by the soul of Charles Lee Ray, the only serial strangler to ever work with a partner in the history of crime, both true and fictional. And you expect me to believe Dinah Manoff took time out of her busy schedule to babysit you AND get murdered, and TMZ isn't even talking about it?!? You must think I'm a real Rubik's cube, my man.
Look, you're Elf on the Shelf may very well be possessed. It may have murdered somebody via defenestration, but don't tell me the plot of one of Hollywood's greatest films and pretend it's your life story. That said, whether it's possessed by a serial killer or not, I'll tell you what I tell everybody about these Elf on the Shelf things: kill it with fire.
Let me start by saying, I'm no Scrooge. I'm not out to ruin anybody's Christmas fun, but my neighbor has gone too far this year. He has erected FIFTEEN Santa-themed inflatables on his lawn, and one of them has really, as the old saying goes, got my goat. Honestly, FOURTEEN of them are fine--I'm not, as they say, over the moon about them, but they don't offend me. He's got one where Santa is driving a train and one with him flying a helicopter. There's one with Santa standing on an elf's shoulders straining to put a star on top of a Christmas tree while Rudolph giggles behind an igloo full of the hat-wearing penguins. There's even one of Our Savior knelt before the baby Jesus. These are fine! But there's another one, smack-dab in the middle of this guy's lawn that, as a wise man once said to a lonely traveler on a mountain road, pisses me the hell off.
The offending inflatable depicts Santa sitting atop a toilet in an outhouse--an outhouse with its DOOR OPEN!!!--while a grinning elf holds his nose because, you know, presumably, Santa Claus has taken a huge, smelly shit. As a devout Clausist, this offends me so deeply I can barely see straight--and I wear corrective lenses designed specifically for that purpose already!!! It's not like I have a Nativity scene on my lawn depicting Mary changing Baby Jesus' diaper while Joseph stands in the corner, waving his hand back and forth in front of his nose. I want to confront this neighbor, who I've never had problems with before, but I've heard he takes his Christmas decorating very seriously and owns several guns. What do you think I should do? An anonymous letter, maybe?
Ho-Santa In The Highest
Dear Ho-Santa In The Highest:
It's a shame what the American neighborhood has become. When I was growing up, I remember walking into any one of my neighbors' homes, even when they weren't home, and helping myself to their snacks and Pay-Per-View porn. It's just what you did. Neighbors were like extensions of your family. I remember going through one neighbor lady's underwear drawer every day after school, sniffing her unmentionables and even trying some on from time to time. She knew what was going on, so did her husband, and they didn't mind because we were neighbors. Now you've got neighbors who call the cops when you and your motorcycle buddies are a little loud after 2 AM or call you out for using the creek that runs through both your backyards as a toilet because you feel it's "more natural" while they think it's "sick" and "unsanitary" and "unnerving."
This guy has got to be taught a lesson. I am also a follower of Santa Claus and His Gospel, and, frankly, I'm sick to death of all this "Jesus is the Reason for the Season" garbage. Hey, Christians, your savior wasn't the only one born on December 25th! And ours brings presents, so, there.
Don't waste your time with a letter--neighbors like this waste of flesh typically cannot read. The only way this guy is going to understand the true meaning of Christmas is if you take a pair of scissors to the offending inflatable. And then poop in his creek. Let me know how it goes!
Back when I was a kid you were either a National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation family or a Santa With Muscles family. We were Christmas Vacation fans. Still are. We watch it every year. What Christmas movies do you like?
Dear Movie Dude:
I come from a Christmas Vacation family as well! Small world!
I like a lot of holiday films, but I'll list just a few:
The Nightmare Before Christmas
Ernest Saves Christmas
Christmas With the Kranks (mostly the part with Jamie Lee Curtis in a bathing suit)
It's a Wonderful Life
Mickey's Christmas Carol (which I'm not sure counts, but it's my list, so, it does)
and, of course, the aforementioned Christmas Vacation!
Next time: Frosty the Snowman, what to get a dick for Christmas and another thing maybe. Or not!