When Traditions Collide

"Dang, this isn't the house, either!"

A friend just wrote how proud she was of their home decorated for the holidays and how her husband was bursting with pride as he looked outside and saw someone slowly driving by to admire their decorations.

That reminded me of the time when traditions collided.  It was one of those moments that I could easily replay over and over again in my mind.  I’ll plant it in your memory so you can share.

At the time, I lived in one of those decorated neighborhoods.  You know the kind–where 99% of the homes are decked out in lights and people came from miles around to tour them, especially on Christmas Eve when 500 luminaria’s were set up throughout the entire development. It was a very magical sight and a tradition for a lot of families.

Now, entire the tradition of celebrating a birthday.  A special 40th birthday, in December, right in the thick of these highly decorated homes.  The house was filled with friends and neighbors and, for a special treat, the man’s wife was going to surprise him with a stripper.  Hey, why not?  We’re all adults.  Nothing too risque` was going to happen.  Those of us in the know had our cameras ready and, right on cue, the woman arrived.  I don’t remember what costume she was wearing…perhaps a police officers’….but it wasn’t on very long.  Everyone watched as she fired up the boombox and gave our honored guest a controlled thrill.

But as I stood there watching this spectacle, I couldn’t help but notice….out through the living room window…the cars slowly doing their turns in the culdesac and then looking in the window of one of the homes and watching a stripper at work.  I could hear the dad driving the car saying, “You know, we’ve gotta come to this neighborhood more often.”

If nothing else, it made Santa’s job of writing down who’s naughty and nice a lot easier.  That night, he might have started a third column for “Both”.

Tim Hunter

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