Tag: holidays

A Lightning-Struck Christmas Tree

After I joined the campus ministry and moved into a five-bedroom Victorian in downtown San Jose with 11 brothers in 1992, my first Christmas away from my family was very special. Being brothers of one spirit, we were too poor to buy a Christmas tree. (That didn’t prevent them from charging $500 USD in long distance phone…

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Post-Halloween Discounted Holiday M&M’s

Between Halloween and Thanksgiving Day, I’m on the lookout for discounted bags of milk chocolate Harvest Holiday M&M’s candies at the local CVS store. I never pay full price for holiday-themed M&M’s because the bags are smaller and more expensive than regular M&M’s. The best price I got last year was before Thanksgiving Day with six bags…

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A Very Loud Fourth of July in Silicon Valley

During the nine years that I lived in my Silicon Valley studio apartment, most Fourth of July fireworks celebrations were quiet affairs. With the fireworks celebration at the Children’s Discovery Museum being a few miles away, I normally heard the air cannons thumping the earth and a distant boom in the sky. Not this year.…

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Target Closed On Easter Day

On Easter Day I went over to Target on Coleman Avenue in San Jose. The first thing I noticed that the parking lot was empty, which made for a strange contrast to the full parking lots in the shopping center. Three rows of red shopping carts barricaded the front doors, as if to prevent a gang of shoplifters−or the zombie…

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The Hunt For Discounted Holiday M&M’s Candies

After a major candy holiday—Valentine’s Day, Easter, Halloween and Christmas—I cruise the local CVS stores to pick up bags of holiday milk M&M’s at a steep discount. The first week discount is 50%, the second week discount is 75%, and, if any bags are still available after two weeks, the final discount is 90%. I scored…

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Yes, Virginia, Santa Claus Is Black As Hell

As a child growing up in the 1970’s, I heard evangelical Christians on the religious TV channels complain about the commercialization of Christmas as mass-market retailers emphasized the importance of giving—and receiving—gifts to the extent that God was often forgotten during the hustle and bustle of the holidays. Unlike the Puritans who actually cancelled Christmas…

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Black Friday 2013 (From The Sidelines)

I’m not sure why anyone would go out on Black Friday—or, lately, Thanksgiving Day—to brave the mayhem, riots and crowds for a few door busters that could be bought online. The last time I physically prowled the stores on Black Friday was for the mythical Wii-Beast when the Nintendo Wii first came out in 2007, which…

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The Great Butterball Turkey Shortage 2013

Butterball announced that there will be a shortage of large fresh turkeys for Thanksgiving this year, implying that the national holiday was in jeopardy if the American family couldn’t buy a large fresh turkey the day before. Not quite. Most families buy a frozen turkey and thaw it out in the fridge for a week.…

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