It’s the Most Desolate Time of the Year

Tra la la.  Can’t you hear the joy in my voice?  I have a beautiful singing voice.  It’s true: perfect pitch, impeccable timing, and never too much vibrato.  I would have moved to New York and starred in musicals on Broadway, but I didn’t want to drive a U-haul™ all that way.

[I fibbed.  That entire previous paragraph was a blatant lie.  I don’t sing; I play the piano.  And I’m not a prodigy; I’m marginal at best.]

Nevertheless, for brilliant musical minds like myself, Christmas is the most miserable time of the year.  Since Thanksgiving, my weeks have been booked to the brim with song practices and rehearsals, and I’m getting used to having no free time whatsoever.

I’m getting used to it, but I’m not happy about it.  In fact, I can’t remember the last time I felt cheerful about anything Christmas. I’ve already decided I will never teach my kids about Santa.  Poor Kyle and I are not exchanging gifts.  Forget the figgy pudding—I’m having Chinese takeout.

Not only do I not feel the Christmas spirit…I’m beginning to loathe it.

Oh, sure, I think it’s fine to have a time to honour Jesus Christ more than usual, but that’s the only thing that hasn’t bothered me so far this season.  I am sick of everything else: the carols, the colours, the baking, the spending, the wrapping, the twinkle lights, the *sob* inspirational stories, and—oh yeah—this:

Those temperatures are in Fahrenheit (a word I am learning to spell with sudden speed, on account of typing it in every email I send to my relatives in Arizona, who have never heard of sub-freezing anything).  I mean, no offense, Poor Kyle’s family, but you guys are nuts.  For living here.  In this cold cold nether-region.  (What is a nether-region?  I’m not sure, but it sounded good…)

It’s so cold here, I’ve stopped locking Tamra Camry’s doors because the locking mechanism freezes and it becomes nigh on impossible to get her unlocked again.

It’s so cold, I bend over and breath steam on the the toilet seat before I sit down in the morning, to alleviate the sudden jolting chill.

It’s so cold on these Canadian plains, I can’t breathe through my nose because my nasal hairs freeze instantly [and you haven’t felt cold until you’ve felt your nose hairs freeze and then splinter off].  But I can’t breathe through my mouth, either, because the frigid air gives me an on-the-spot case of the whooping cough, and my two poor little desert-bred lungs stop functioning—they go into shock from the cold, and simply fail me.  So any time I need to leave the house or the car, I can only go as far as I can hold my breath.  Otherwise I die.

Here’s the picture I’m sending out with my Christmas cards this year:

Not this actual photo, but the photo in the photo.

So yeah.  Merry Christmas, I guess.

And if I smile when I tell you that, you can be sure I’m faking it.

About Camille

I’m Camille. I have a butt-chin. I live in Canada. I was born in Arizona. I like Diet Dr. Pepper. Hello.

You can find me on Twitter @archiveslives, Facebook at, instagram at ArchivesLives, and elsewhere.

This entry was posted in Canada, fiascos, oh brother what next, what I'm about, woe is me. Bookmark the permalink.

27 Responses to It’s the Most Desolate Time of the Year

  1. anon10 says:

    Well, that’s weird. I, in fact, LOVE christmas. The lights, the family, the friends and I guess the gifts. I guess you could say the whole “christmas package.” I hope when Christmas day comes, you may feel a little bit more excited… hopefully!

  2. bRAD says:

    I’m so glad I don’t live in a cold and desolite nether-region!

  3. Holly Decker says:

    sorry you are feelin a bit “blue” and icey this Christmas…
    here are some positives…
    1. you are a babe. did you SEE that picture of you and santa? and did you SEE the girl holding it? seriously.
    2. you have your martha stewart Christmas tree all set up and pretty :)
    3. you have your own website. seriously.

    thats all my optimism for now, but um, i will try to keep my jolliness to myself :)
    you know, just for the record [i say that a lot] i have been lacking in the Christmas spirit, myself this year. and then [i am about to blog about this] i went to the Motab concert at temple square… and i feel much better now. not like- “childhood” christmas feeling-ish… more like, ‘now i know how to actually feel about christmas’ feeling. cuz sometimes, lets be honest, its a bit anti-climactic… especially when its just two people enjoying Christmas.

  4. Camille says:

    anon10– Bully for you.

    bRAD– Me, too. That would be weird if you lived here.

    Holly Decker– Thanks for trying. Unfortunately I have a butt-chin and nothing will ever change that fact. So I am not a babe. At any rate, I appreciate the noble effort you gave trying to cheer me up. For me, listening to Motab would be pointless because I’m sick of music altogether. But I’m glad it worked for you and you are feelin’ the love this Christmas season.

  5. nether regions are your private areas. haha. but that is funny.

    I would die living in the cold. It would take less than a week to kill me, and take me to the morgue, then they would have to wait until the ground thawed to bury me… what a mess that would be!

  6. Camille says:

    Molly Shumway Rawlins– Oh my. How awkward of me. I thought it sounded like a phrase I’d heard before… Thanks for the heads-up.

  7. I am having a hard time feeling like it is Christmas already. I am just trying to survive finals. And we do not have a single decoration in sight. So sad.

    I think it will be hard to not tell your kids about Santa. Unless you homeschool them and keep them in cages in your basement.

  8. Heber says:

    Please take no offense, Mr.’s Rawlins; but, I cannot abide incomplete information.

    And also, I love looking up meanings and don’t remind repeating them, so bear my spiel!

    To begin: Webster’s New World Dictionary defines ‘nether’ thus: 1) lying, or thought of as lying, below the earth surface 2) lower or under

    If you encounter “nether region” in a historical work, or one of older production it refers to Hell or something similar. In example, “The Scarlet Letter” employs its use on page 225 in a description of Chillingworth delivering a sermon.

    As found in the second definition this word’s meaning is broader than just below the earth’s surface. Example: The ‘Nether’ lands, as most the country is flat and downriver.

    The last example has already been detailed by the considerate Mr.’s Rawlins. I only add that this euphemism is generally accompanied by a possessive word such ‘my’ or ‘your’ since those particular nether regions tend to belong to someone.

    Please don’t find me indignant.

    P.S. I plan on attending the memorial service.

    P.S.S I enjoyed your alternate opinion. I am not as dissatisfied with Christmas as you; however I don’t tend to feel the same excitement for it as do most my peers.

  9. Today when I talked to my parents and they were complaining about the BLIZZARD back home in North Dakota, I have to admitt that I smiled and was happy to say that I am glad we moved to SoCal, very sunny SoCal! But I sure do miss that nice white layer of snow at Christmas time!

  10. Camille says:

    Emily Merkley– I won’t tell my kids about Santa. The rest of the world probably will, but I will make sure to nip those notions in the butt as soon as I hear about them. I’ll be sure to teach them the story of Christ’s birth…just none of this Santa nonsense.

    Heber– Thanks for the added details. I probably shouldn’t have used “nether region” as a term to describe Canada. I’m glad I have an almost-fellow-scrooge friend in you.

    Jennifer Roach– SoCal…oh, how I miss it. I spent a great deal of time there in my youth (as opposed to now, in my old old age). Maybe PK and I will be lucky enough to swing by D-land during our Christmas vacation to AZ. A six-hour drive seems so SHORT compared to a 24-hour trek.

  11. raygon says:

    Oh the nose freezing cold! We have had our fair share of that here too.
    I will admit, this weather wipes the festive spirit right out of me too.
    Camille, lets wallow in our pity together. Poor you. Poor me. Poor us!!!

  12. Ed Monton says:

    What can i say about these bitter bitter cold snaps?
    You get used to them.
    And you learn how to dress warm.
    And in my case, I’m glad i ride the bus.
    And i enjoy watching the cars slide into each other.
    And then it warms up a bit.

    As for Christmas, i also think it’s WAY overdone. That bird is toast.

    Hang in there.
    Then there’s a ‘New Year’s Eve’ apparantly. I don’t leave the house for that superfake party.
    Peace out.

  13. Ed Monton says:

    Hey, I just thought of another one, just for You.
    Since You’ll have toque head for the next several months, You don’t have to wash your hair. Just Your toque.

  14. anonymous says:

    santa’s for sissies. bah humbug.

  15. kayleen says:

    the snow is for suckers. i’m fine looking at it through a living room window, but any closer and i panic.

    great xmas card pic. you’re looking dead serious about santa.

  16. Jami says:

    SO FUNNY! Seriously, this post put a smile on my face. I just happen to know WHY you are having to play the piano a lot (my brife convo with adelle). That would make my Christmas SUCK as well. There is nothing worse than what you are having to do.
    Also, that cold weather is terrible. I can’t imagin…nor do I ever want to have to deal with that. Cold is so HORRIBLE. It is only like in the 50’s today, I already have 2 coats on.

  17. Camille says:

    Raygon– Wallowing in my misery with someone else is my favourite thing to do! How did you know exactly what I needed? Thanks, friend.

    Ed Monton– That bird IS toast. Glad you’re on my side. And good tip, about the toque. I never brush my hair anyway, so now I can add “not washing” to my list of things.

    anonymous– Bah humbug back atcha.

    kayleen– I am dead serious about this. I mean it.

    Jami– Thanks for the sympathy. That’s all I really want out of life… a bit of sympathy.

  18. HeatherPride says:

    So being that much closer to Santa’s Workshop in the North Pole doesn’t do it for ya? Huh.

  19. WhoNose? says:

    I want to cry for you.

  20. Geneva says:

    So we have a shortage of pianists in our ward. One of my good friends got recruited and was having a nervous breakdown so I told her I would take care of the piano playing so she could work on everything else in her life. What the H was I thinking? I’m now practicing two hours a day on a stupid piece because I’m a joke of piano player. And the worst part is that if I can make it sound half decent, everyone will think I can *actually* play. You have my utmost sympathy.

    Oh and I’m with you on the no santa deal. My parents didn’t even have santa decorations, just nativity scenes. They didn’t stop the kids from doing things like leaving stuff for santa, but they never really promoted it. I don’t think any of us ever truly believed the world wide ruse, but we had fun pretending.

  21. niki says:

    you poor, poor dear. i truly am so miserable for you. i wouldn’t know how to empathize. I’ve only been in ‘real’ snow one time. other than that, 50 degrees is more than i can handle! at least you look fabulous in those picture(s). truly. you have great lips. and i love your butt chin.

  22. Anonymous says:


    I. Am. So. Sorry. Words cannot express my deep sorrow and sympathy. It was 48 degrees here for a little bit today and all I could think of was how very sorry I was for you. Hang on for six more days. Then stay an extra week. Or two.

  23. Joleen Verenski says:

    Can you remeber going to Aunt Jenni’s and Uncle Brents cabin where you sang City Lights. Sometimes I just start laughing because you did it so good and I miss those days. You should love Christmas. I miss ya and love ya Camille.

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  25. Whitney says:

    Camille, you poor thing. To not be able to breathe through your nose or your mouth… how do you survive? I blame PK. He is a mean and heartless man for making you live in such a horrid place.

  26. anonymous says:

    Do you know how they bury the dead people in Canada? Do they have a really strong digger thing that gets through all the snow and mud?

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