Boy does it feel good to win! No matter how altruistic you are, you simply can't deny that rush of adrenaline that you get when you win a competition, contest, or even something good from the bottle cap on that soda! I'm STILL disappointed that I didn't get one of those Dr. Pepper Camaros, though.
So, this past weekend, I won in a BIG way!
Our Christmas lights were up the longest in our neighborhood. There was a close contest between us, and our next door neighbor, but they finally relented on Friday afternoon. Ours came down on Saturday. It doesn't even really matter to me that they most likely were not aware of the contest. I see that fact as being largely irrelevant.
Life is good.
In fact, some of my most exciting victories have come when the other contestants didn't even know they were contestants! For example, my wife and I frequently find ourselves at the same location with two cars. If we are going to the same next location, usually home, the race is on! I don't think it really matters if she is informed about the race, or not. If I have one of my daughters in the car, it can be even more exciting. They can get worked into a fever pitch over the contest. Well, at least my youngest daughter. My oldest daughter now expresses her enthusiasm for my contests against people who aren't aware they are in competition with me with the following statement:
"That's nice, Dad." (returns to texting).
I hear that a lot, come to think about it. I don't let her apparent lack of enthusiasm dampen my spirits, though. I know she is doing back flips in her mind. Contests that provide a similar thrill for me include the checkout line races. This is where you try to determine which checkout line is the faster. I can't play this game with my wife, though. Despite her many talents, picking a line is not one of them. In fact, she is terrible at it.
It's still a big thrill when I make a mental note of who I would have been behind in all the other lines. If I get through MY line first, I WIN! Oh, the fun you can have.
Well, I've got to go. I'm in a heated contest with my daughter to see who can stay in their pajamas longer. This is more challenging, as even if she is told to "get dressed" a hundred-billion times, she can still resist.
She's tough. Very tough.
Epilogue: Before you get the idea that we are one of THOSE families that leaves their lights up until May, we are not! Our tradition is to take them down when our church celebrates Epiphany. Generally, this falls AFTER the actual date of Epiphany (the 12th day of Christmas - when the Christian church celebrates the arrival of the magi - effectively the introduction of Jesus to the gentile world). However, this year, we celebrated this in church BEFORE the actual date of Epiphany. Well, we couldn't take down decorations (inside or out) before that, so we agreed we'd take them down the next weekend. We DID this on the interior decorations, but the outdoor ones were encased in ICE. ICE. Those little wires are brittle enough when they aren't frozen, so I waited until temps got above freezing. I decided to keep the lights ON, during this time, which my oldest told me was "tacky." Bleh to her. She's doing back flips on the inside, I'm sure.