December 10, 2009

by Casey Adroin

Let’s face it, some people are Christmas people. You know the type-they seem to get in the festive cheer before the Thanksgiving turkey comes out of the oven, decorating their apartments with garland, lights and ribbon and baking tasty treats topped with red and green icing while “Jingle Bell Rock” blares in the background.

But while they’re having a merry little time, some of us find that the holidays can be a little stressful.

After all, an increased amount of free time combined with dysfunctional family members can be a potential disaster waiting to happen.

So for those who are wary of the season’s greetings, heed these 12 tips for surviving the holidays at home.

1. Bring headphones. Despite a positive attitude, at some point you will need to get away, and no one will bother you if you’re armed with a well-placed iPod.

2. When Mom breaks out the matching pajamas for Christmas morning, suck it up and wear them. You’ll look back and laugh 10 years from now.

3. Always be aware of where the mistletoe is hung, especially if you want to avoid that awkward kiss from Grandpa.

4. Don’t overeat. Sure, take advantage of a meal that does not consist of cafeteria food, but remember that those calories come back to school with you.

5. On the same note, for all you health freaks out there, enjoy a cookie. It’s Christmas, for Christ’s sake.

6. Don’t bring your newly found significant other over to meet the family if you have any intention on keeping them. The risk factor for embarrassing photos, awkward questions and general insanity grows exponentially when more than three relatives are present.

7. If you have that grandma that still gives you socks as a gift, act surprised. Not only will you shock your siblings, but Granny will be much appreciative. Besides, everyone needs socks.

8. Bring up something you learned in class at the dinner table. It will make you sound smart, plus it will reassure Dad that the cash he dished out for college isn’t going to waste.

9. When attending family functions, make sure you’re aware of the dress code. Nothing is worse than showing up in jeans and a hoodie when everyone else looks like they stepped out of a Gucci ad.

10. Stay away from cameras at parties where you’ve had too much to drink. Chances are you’ll be so busy with family that you won’t be able to check Facebook in time to untag those unflattering party pics before your friends can make fun of you.

11. Bring your books home with you. While it offers plenty of time away from class, winter quarter is also notorious for its ability to persuade you into slacking off. Trust me; you want to be prepared for that test your professor will spring on you the week we get back from break.

12. Loosen up. No matter how dysfunctional your family is, remember that they are your closest link to the past and the people most likely to be in your future.

Casey Ardoin is a senior journalism major from Pineville who serves as editor of The Tech Talk. E-mail comments to cma027@latech.edu