December 29th, 2015

krazy koati

Blend with the crowd, blend with the loud

We spent Christmas with my in-laws, as is our custom. I'm happy doing it, so please don't take the song cue for this entry (Sparks's ``Thank God It's Not Christmas'') too literally. It was part of a week spent, mostly, visiting her parents and seeing her brother, who came over to our house twice in the short time available. So you know how popular a pinball machine in the house makes you.

The high point would be both nights when bunny_hugger's brother and his girlfriend were up for playing Betrayal at the House on the Hill, the haunted-house-movie-based board game. Every time I figured the session was over someone suggested how about another round and we did it. I'm not sure whether we played six or seven games all told, which is a pretty good record as the games take an hour or so each and the girlfriend had never played the game before. (It's not hard, but there's a lot of fiddly rules to work out.) Her brother got weirdly competitive about the games, since he was on the losing side repeatedly. Mercifully he was on the winning side in the final game, one in which I ended up playing a giant monster spider, and everyone else was trying to smash its eggs and escape; this literally came down to the last card in the deck. The games often have a suspenseful climax, but this was hilariously tight, as we kept not just rolling lucky but superlatively lucky.

And it was a good time for gift-giving. bunny_hugger's parents gave her a good number of Drifter bars. These are a British candy basically impossible to find in the United States --- we've seen more StarBars than Drifters --- and none too easy to find in Britain either. She's had them on her wish list for ages and this year they came through. I'd picked up, because the cover looked good, a Haruki Murakami set (Hear The Wind Sing and Pinball, 1973) for bunny_hugger's brother. Murakami turns out to be one of his favorite authors and this was a book he didn't have. Her parents gave me a collection of Walt Kelly comic-book adaptations of nursery rhymes that I had forgotten even existed. And my parents sent us a basket made of woven grasses, a Charleston-area specialty. We'd had it sitting under our tree for weeks without any good ideas what it might be. bunny_hugger had noted my parents managed to tie a gift tag through the wrapping and around the basket's handle, but forgot to write to- or from- information, which is about right.

And that's the most immediate bits of what we did on Christmas Day. Fuller report to follow, maybe.

Trivia: Forrest Mars Sr had the 'Snickers' bar named 'Marathon' in Britain to avoid the association with the rhyming 'knickers'. Source: The Emperors of Chocolate: Inside the Secret World of Hershey and Mars, Joël Glenn Brenner.

Currently Reading: Lost Islands: The Story Of Islands That Have Vanished From The Nautical Charts, Henry Stommel.