If anything, I am nothing but a jolly old elf. It even says so on my Tinder profile. That’s why a festive idea struck me the other night. I was looking at posts made in our neighborhood watch app. You know the one. It’s where everyone goes to complain about raccoons and squirrels. There was a thread of people lamenting about the lack of a Christmas Parade this year due to the pandemic (If only you had worn a mask, Karen!).
Therefore, since I am a jolly old elf and will strain myself to my physical and mental limits to make holidays something to write home about, I decide that I would make a safe and distanced Christmas Parade experience happen for the neighborhood. I enlisted some friends for the idea, we all stayed inside for two weeks and agreed we would wear masks as we went around. The idea is that we would go caroling, then offer some hard candy to toss out, much like a festive parade.
Now in keeping with our desire to distance, I decide to rig a few things up to help with that. Firstly, I made a door ringing stick using an old wooden dowel and a BIC pen taped to the front. Secondly, I needed a safe way to toss out the candy. I had a handful of brach’s and a mission in mind. I deiced the most effective way was to modify a T-Shirt cannon to shoot the candy out with a puff of air. I tested it several times in my basement and found it worked like a charm!
Using the same app from whence the idea sprang, I alerted my neighbors to when the day we would do this would be. The idea was met with everything from mild excitement to indifference. But on the day we all gathered—six feet apart and masked—and marched up the street to the first home we would be stopping at. I rang the doorbell with my ringing stick. The people who live there came to the door, stood on their porch and we sang. As we finished I held the T-Shirt cannon up and said “Merry Christmas” as I pressed the trigger and sent a handful of butterscotch and peppermints flying to their doorstep. It worked like a charm!
Things kept going fine at the second and third houses, but at the fourth, you could tell the homeowners seemed a little uneasy of the whole idea, and of the fact that I was carrying a T-Shirt cannon full of candy. This is when something went wrong. There was a little dial on the side of the canon that allowed me to adjust the amount of pressure going into the firing chamber. The more we walked with it held at my side, the more it began to side upwards, increasing the pressure bit by bit.
And so, at this fourth house, where there was a bit of tension to start with when the time came to fire the candy into the air, it was a truly amazing spectacle. The candy shot out with a loud “Pop” that shocked all of us, and the candy went not on the porch, but directly at the faces of the people standing on the porch, breaking a vase and also causing the husband in the situation to chase us around with a putting iron.
Christmas is a time to be thinking of others, and not yourself. This is why I think it was very poor taste to be chased back to my own home by someone screaming “You un-funny candy terrorist!” We decided to not go to any more homes as the neighborhood app just became a party of people dragging me left and right. All I wanted was to spread some cheer this strange and difficult Christmas, and now I may have to move.
I sold the T-Shirt cannon on craigslist as I have no desire to ever be seen with it again. The biggest problem is I don’t know what I’m going to do with 50 pounds each of Butterscotch discs and Peppermint rounds. Know any Shriners that need a donation for next year? See you next week.