All I got for Christmas was an iPad and the flu. No, seriously, I did get a number of other lovely gifts, which I have not been able to enjoy because of the aches and chills, and fever and coughing, and wanting to sleep for hours. Therefore I failed to get this posted yesterday, which would have been perfect because yesterday was Boxing Day. Boxing day is a holiday unique to the British Commonwealth wherein people of means would box up gently used items and share with those less fortunate. At churches, the alms boxes would also get special attention on Boxing Day.
I like the idea of sharing, so I will probably be boxing up some things to take to our local church-sponsored thrift store, but I won’t give them my iPad.
While you consider what you might give away for Boxing Day, enjoy this take on the holiday by Slim Randles. His explanation is a lot more fun.
‘Twas the morning after Christmas, and all through the Mule Barn truck stop’s philosophy counter …
“Happy Boxing Day!” said Herb, settling in and flipping his cup to the upright and fillable position.
“Boxing Day?” said Steve.
“It certainly is,” Herb said. He’s like that … a lot.
We looked at each other. Doc put down the crossword puzzle he was working on.
“You think there’ll ever be another Mohammed Ali?” said Dud.
“The best,” Doc said.
“How about Sugar Ray Robinson?” Steve said. “A toast to the great ones!”
Cups were raised.
“Guys?” said Herb. “Boxing Day isn’t about … boxing.”
“I knew this was coming,” Dud said.
“Boxing Day goes back to medieval times …”
“Seriously,” Herb said. “It was the day after Christmas, and the masters of the castles and manor houses would give the servants the day off to go see their families …”
“Because on Christmas they had to stay in the castle and feed the duke?” Steve asked.
“Precisely. So the lord and master would give each servant a box with goodies in it for the servant’s kiddies and send them on their way for a day.”
“Is this what started the Boxer Rebellion?” Dud asked. Dud collected strange knowledge.
“No, no!” Herb said, “That was in China …”
“Don’t they make boxer shorts in China?”
We watched Herb. “I don’t even know why I bother …”
Neither do we.
“You guys ever see Mike Tyson’s uppercut?”
“I know he’s hard on ears.”
“I heard about the War of Jenkins’ Ear,” Dud said. “Maybe that was hooked up with the Boxer Rebellion?”
Free for today and tomorrow, The Visitor, a charming short story that is a retelling of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Just who is the strange visitor to Amanda and her family in their Colorado mountain cabin?