The Attraction of Opposites

A younger friend gave some good advice in our discussion about how opposites attract as we discussed the issue of whether the glass is half-full or half-empty. She and her husband have opposite positions in this view from us in that her husband takes the half-full option while she takes the half-empty one. In wisdom, she said that kept them from going overboard in either direction. I’m going to make an effort to keep that in mind when Al fails to see all the good stuff in that half-full glass.

This season brings another issue on which we are opposites. The first Christmas with an empty nest and nobody returning to share it, I was shocked to hear Al ask, “So, nobody is going to be here this year so we don’t need to put up a tree, do we?”

“What do you mean? I’m going to be here.” According to my philosophy, the day after Thanksgiving was made for cooking gumbo with the remains of the turkey, watching football, and putting up Christmas decorations. I scatter them throughout the house, often finding a forgotten relic of the season in some corner as I get ready for Easter.

Al muttered and grumbled, a cross between the Grinch and Scrooge. The boxes came out of storage, the tree went up, the outside lights were strung, and the yard ornaments properly placed. The next time we were alone for Christmas, he grudgingly said, “I guess you’re gonna want all that Christmas stuff out.”  

This year, he brought up the subject himself. “I think Tiny Tim needs a little more wood to sit on than I put out last year.”

There appears to be hope even for the Grinch, Scrooge, and Al. After all, “in Who-ville they say that the Grinch's small heart grew three sizes that day!” – and at the Christmas celebration, the Grinch himself carved the roast-beast!

As for Scrooge when his heart was turned, it was said that he “knew how to keep Christmas well, if any man alive possessed that knowledge. May that be truly said of us, and all of us! And so, as Tiny Tim observed, [and as Al and I would echo] God bless us, Every One!”