Special/Signature Issues » The Holiday Almanac



I've been sharing my cat passion with people for, I don't know, 20 years now. And let me tell you, pun intended, it's always left me “feline” good. Ha. Isn't that cute? Saw that on a birthday card a while back. Always made me smile.

So what I do is, I give away kittens for free. Yes, I know what Bob Barker says about spaying — and yes, I'm still a fan of Bob's, even if he did retire. I tried to get on the show once while I was visiting my half-sister in Los Angeles. What a sunny place! Beautiful people. Palm trees. When you visit it's so obvious why all the movie stars want to live there and such. Oh, I didn't get into the show but a few months later I got to watch the episode that we stood in line for. Golly, what a rush. It may just be a game show but it really does change people's lives. One of my friends that I scrapbook with knew this woman who was on her last dime. Well she won $10,000 by spinning the wheel. And a car! What she did was, she sold the car and paid off her credit-card bills. Now that's just a blessing any way you slice it.

If I had that kind of money I'd visit Los Angeles again. That is, if Ryan Seacrest is still single! Oh, I can't believe I said that out loud. But he's just so cute! Gosh, what that “Idol” show has done for our country! Course I'd also put some of my winnings back into my cats. Oh, look how Jimmy is sitting on his chair. He's just so stubborn. Some of the others try to jump up there and he just won't have any of it. The personalities! Just amazing how they have these little personalities.

I get so excited whenever one of my cats is ready to have kittens. I don't call it a litter. Nope, I call it an explosion of love. So many of 'em just pop out, but each one is special. They know me as Miss Kitty down the road, where I set up every other Saturday and just give the babies away. The best time is Christmas, when I know the kids will get a little furry surprise under the tree. Sure it's hard to give 'em away. You bet. But I know I'm just paying it forward, as they say. That kitten's just a little expanding bubble of love that just keeps on filling up your heart. Pop!

For the Holidays

1. Road-trip to hear angels. “American Idol” contestants perform Christmas standards at the Salem Civic Center Dec. 10 at 7:30 p.m. $40-$45. 540-375-3004.

2. Animals. Miracle of Christmas: Live at the Zoo at Maymont features three shows each evening Dec. 21-23. 739-5666.

3. Pet pals. See “Bolt,” the animated feature about a dog-actor German shepherd who thinks he has superpowers, starring John Travolta and Miley Cyrus. Nov. 21.

4. Craft bonanza. The Sixth Annual Bizarre Bazaar Shopping Spree happens at the Richmond Raceway Complex to raise money for Virginia Commonwealth University's Massey Cancer Center. 5-9 p.m. Dec. 3. 828-1451.

5. Hunting for treasure. The 17th Street Farmers' Market holds its annual holiday shopping spree of handmade crafts, toys and collectibles from 5-9 p.m.


Here's the problem with giving, right: You ain't got it no more. I never heard of somebody getting rich by giving stuff away. Warren Buffett maybe. But he's got Mafia ties, so I hear. So in general, it don't pay to give. Matter of fact, it costs.

Ever heard of a little book by Ayn Rand called “The Virtue of Selfishness”? Ever read it? Me neither. I asked for it for my birthday one year and — wouldn't you know? — got a lecture from Dad on “the virtue of getting a damn job” instead. And that's pretty much my response to the so-called “spirit” of the so-called “holidays” — earn it, jerks.

I can't understand how anybody can even think about giving the way things are right now. I mean, what does it say that the best deal going is gasoline? I thought about giving jars of gas to a few folks — my mailman and the girl at Kinko's — but then you know I'm gonna do that and the price will go right up again. No, I think stockpiling is the name of the game these days.

I am proud to say that my basement can now officially be called a bunker: I've laid in enough rice and iodine pills that I should be able to get through a long (nuclear) winter wonderland. And no, you can't borrow a cup of cornmeal. Should've thought of that before things went Communist, you Communist.
The annual ritual of handouts they call the holidays is a really great way to convince kids that panhandling is A-OK, that if you wait long enough and sit there with a sad look on your face and long unwashed hair, by God, somebody will just think you're the best thing going for our society and subsidize your wasted life.

Not me, though. If you see me on the street, don't expect a little gift this holiday. Ah, unless you're Kate — I'll bring a little jar of something special by Kinko's later this week.

For the Holidays

1. Good show, good price. Richmond rockers Horsehead play a free show at Toad's Place Dec. 5 at 8 p.m. 648-TOAD.

2. Channeling Scrooge. Richmond Shakespeare's “A Christmas Carol for Two Actors” at Second Presbyterian Church Dec. 11-21.

3. Pain is a virtue. It's WWE Smackdown and ECW Live, featuring Triple H, the Undertaker and the Big Show. Dec. 29 at the Richmond Coliseum, 7 p.m. $21-$61. 262-8100 or www.ticketmaster.com.

4. Bunker reading. Ayn Rand titles at www.amazon.com.

5. Decorate your bunker. Hanover Tavern's wreath-making workshop is Dec. 6, 10:30 a.m.-noon, followed by a special holiday open house until 4 p.m. 537-5050.




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