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Boating: Merry Christmas or whatever you celebrate!

December 21, 2011
By boatguy Ed , Fort Myers Beach Bulletin, Fort Myers Beach Observer

Ho ho ho and Merry Christmas! Hear those sleigh bells ringing and the children singing. See the elves stretching their little muscles in an attempt to get in shape for a long night of helping Santa. Yes, Virginia there is a Santa Claus and no you won't get a lump of coal in your stocking, but you better be a 'good girl' if you want to get the Mercedes Convertible.

I love Christmas songs, too! Bing Crosby and Frank Sinatra and Johnny Mathis are the old stand-bys but today you might hear some non-traditional Country songs like "Grandma got run over by a Reindeer" or "Merry Christmas from the Family." The old ones are familiar and good but times are changing.

One positive change is the 'Buy American' movement that ABC spawned on their nightly news. Mrs. Claus and I went to a very popular toy store and asked if they had any toys made here and the sales clerk pointed us toward an end cap at the back of the store. When we returned to her we asked, "That can't be all of them?" She confessed that just the top shelf was American made; they filled in the lower shelf with Chinese made toys in order to even out the display. "But in the bicycle aisle I think there are a couple of bikes and a few baseball bats somewhere?"

While we stood in line with two 'slinkies' we watched Mother after Mother ahead and behind us pushing carts full of Chinese toys. "Do you try to buy American," I asked several Moms.

"I don't have time for that," one woman said, "my husband and kids are waiting for dinne,r and he's a bear since he lost his job!" Go figure and have a Merry Christmas. Don't forget to stop by the charity food pantry for your Christmas dinner.

Do you think that was harsh? Scrooge-like, maybe? I just wish some people would wake up and smell the mistletoe! It may sink in someday. Maybe after they can't even afford to buy the Chinese junk. As a great Philosopher's once said, "We have met the enemy and he is us!" Credit to 'Pogo.'

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Years! Just 4 more days before all Christmas parties are over, and we can get ready for the New Years Eve parties. The sales of Milk Thistle (reported to have protective effects on the liver and greatly improve its function) must be tremendous at this time of year. I'm sure sales of egg nog and bourbon are right up there, too.

Don't get me wrong, as you might have guessed, I like parties and to party, but this stretch of season makes me long for the cleansing season of Lent. 'DECYC' member 'Cleveland Jack' gave up drinking last Lent, and it was very comforting for his friends to follow his progress. None of the other "Dead End Canal Yacht Club" members joined him but we cheered on his endeavor. We look forward to another 'fast,' Jack?

Our 'DECYC' Christmas Party was lightly attended because so many members were dragged up north to be with their family. That's why were observing Russian Christmas which is celebrated on Jan. 7, according to the old Julian Calendar. The "Dead End Canal Yacht Club" party will be held Jan. 5 at a location to be determined by whichever waterfront restaurant wants to donate several platters of old cheese and mystery meat. You must e-mail me ( no later than Jan. 3 to be notified of the Russian Christmas Party location.

I believe the overflow crowd of a dozen or so social members, potential members and curiosity seekers should warrant such a donation, don't you? Let's not hope for too great a crowd like the Boat Parade but a nice showing would help us convince the places we frequent that the "Dead End Canal Yacht Club" is a force to reckoned with!

During the week between New Years Day and Russian Christmas we will leave our trees standing and await the arrival of "Grandfather Frost" and his granddaughter, the "Snow Maiden." I hope you understand that this isn't some sacrilegious excuse to party but an attempt to extend the spirit of Christmas and to celebrate it with more of our friends. Well, maybe it is an excuse to party more but certainly not in a sacrilegious way!

While growing up my Father told us we were Irish on St Patrick's Day, American on the Fourth of July and Russian on Jan. 7. I've always suspected that being Russian allowed Santa to get our toys at a discount. Don't forget to e-mail me for the time and location of the Russian Christmas party at

(ITALICS) Boatguy Ed is a a retired bottom paint manufacturer. His wife now makes the paint, Super Shipbottom, He was a volunteer on his Son's TV show, Boater's Treasure TV until the Groupon clones drove the restaurants to give up on half priced coupons and television advertising. Send all comments to



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