‘Twas The Night Before Nerdmas

(This is something Lain and I wrote years ago for our comic strip, Hatbag, It appears in our collection, Bagged & Bored.)



‘Twas the night before Nerdmas, when all through the house
Only Seth was stirring; he was clicking his mouse.
The network was primed through the router with care,
Seth with iPodIn hopes that St. EveJobs soon would be there. 

His buddies were nestled all snug in their cribs,
With visions of Mountain Dew, Skittles, and ribs.
And Seth in his PJs that showed Mr. T
Had just settled down in his unique IP.

When out in the street there arose such a ruckus,
Seth sprang from his chair, knocking over his Zuckuss.
Away to the window he flew like The Flash,
A complete run of whose comic was safe in Seth’s stash.

The moon on Seth’s car, all Dr. Who-stickered,
Gave a glimmer like magic as off them it flickered.
When what to Seth’s wondering eyes should appear,
hollyBut a flying DeLorean with robot reindeer.

With a little old driver, such a tech-laden elf,
That Seth knew it must be Mr. Apple himself.
More rapid than broadband his coursers they came,
And, linked to them with Bluetooth, he called them by name!

“Now, H4x0r! Now, Lucas! Now Shatner and Tolkien!
On Gygax! On Torvalds! On Bendis and Whedon!
To the top of the porch! Don’t mind the firewall!
Now dash away! Dash away! Dash away all!”

As back issues that in the big comics sale fly,
Before collectors raise their price to the sky,
So up Seth’s house-top the coursers they flew,
hollyWith a bunch of nerd swag, and St. EveJobs too.

And then, in a twinkling, Seth heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of each nerdy hoof.
As he reached for his phaser, his face Yoda-green,
Down the modem came Jobs, and right out through the screen

He was dressed casually, from his head to his foot,
And his mock turtleneck was as black as the soot.
With a bundle of toys to dole out from his sack,
As quick as a row of Xserves on a rack.

His eyes – how they twinkled! His glasses how trendy!
His smile was like Mork, his composure like Mindy!
St. EvejobsHis droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And his cool six-day stubble was flecked as with snow.

A tiny iPod he had tucked in its sheath,
And the white earphones circled his head like a wreath.
His West Coast physique had no hint of a belly,
And he radiated cool like Arthur Fonzarelli.

He was techno and hip, a right nerdy old elf,
And Seth laughed as he showed him his figurine shelf.
A wink of Jobs’ eye and a twist of his head
Told Seth that his love of toys soon would be fed.

He opened his pack and brought out many things,
Complete sets of both Star Wars and Lord of the Rings,
A soldering kit, and a Wi-Fi detector,
hollyAnd a cardboard stand-up of Hannibal Lector.

A Trinity doll, in all her skin-tight black finery,
And a set of droll T-shirts, with slogans in binary.
A new MIDI keyboard, a case of Diet Cokes,
And The Omnibus Big Book of Microsoft Jokes.

As the last of the nerd loot piled up on the floor,
He brought out the batteries – fifty or more!
And then, turning the switch on his belt back to Play,
He gave Seth a grin, and beamed back to his sleigh.

Jobs booted his team, and as they leapt towards the moon,
Seth saw a bumper sticker: I (Heart) Kakrafoon
And he heard Jobs exclaim, as he warped into night,
“One more thing: Happy Nerdmas, and to all an iSight!”

–Lain Hughes & David Hitt



Happy Christmas 2010

So this is Christmas
And what have you done?
Another year over,
And a new one just begun.

This is my public apology.

I wrote a post a year ago today titled Happy Christmas that dwelt on those lyrics and how they fit my life at that moment. And that’s fine.

Last year, it was easy to focus on the negative. There was a lot of negative to go around, in my life and in the lives of those close to me. There were things I’d been through in the past year that were painful.

I ended it saying, as one should, focusing on the positive, and saying that I was happy. I didn’t say why. But this is what I did say:

I was reading a book earlier this year that had a story about the phrase “This too shall pass.” You hear it a lot in bad times, as encouragement that things will get better. But it’s just as true during the good times, and just as good to remember — Enjoy the moment. Take nothing for granted. Live today. Love today.

And, so, yeah, sure, this, too, shall pass. But, today, I’m happy.

And it fit where I was a year ago. My happiness came from something that I had every reason to believe would be transitory, and rather than not being content with that, I settled. And I used those ancient words of wisdom to justify it. Make the most of today, because any happiness is transitory.

But it’s a lie.

There is truth in it, but it is not truth. Not everything passes. Not everything is ephemeral. And even the things that are transitory on the eternal scale can still last a lifetime, if we let them. But there are also things that are eternal. A mother’s child will always be her child, even in the next world after this one melts away. That shall not pass.

In sadness, mourn as if this too shall pass, as if there’s always hope that tomorrow is better. In happiness, rejoice like this too shall pass, never take a second of joy for granted, but enjoy each one as it comes.

But love like it’s eternal. Grab hold to it, and never let it go. Because it’s worth it. Fight like there’s an eternal, like we are capable of making a difference today that will resound in heaven, because we can. Treasure your parents and your children like they will always be your parents and your children, because they will. Live like you’re leaving a lasting legacy, and you will.

And do it today. Treasure what you have this holiday season. I’ve been through some Christmases in the last few years that were much happier than the year had made me think they would be, and I’ve been through some that, compared to my expectations for them, just downright sucked. My biggest regret is that the ones with hurt caused me to miss the things that I did have. The things that don’t pass.

May you and yours have a very, very happy Christmas.