I'm working tonight, on Christmas Eve. Well, okay..."working" isn't exactly the right term for it. I'm AT work, reading Gore Vidal's 1876 and watching the clock creep towards 10:30, when I can go home. We've got all the kids together except for Robbie, unfortunately. He's working at his own hospital, 2000 miles away.
Which brings me to my main point....
On my way to work today I heard a little teaser on NPR's Talk of the Nation for tomorrow's show. It'll be about which kinds of people are at work doing what kinds of jobs on Christmas. He was inviting people to call in and tell their stories. The host also said he wouldn't be at work tomorrow, but Ari Shapiro would be substituting for him since, presumably, he's not an observer of Christmas.
Unfortunately, I'll be at work on Christmas, as will my only misbegotten son. I work a three year rotation that has me work one of the "big three" winter holidays each year; Thanksgiving, Christmas, or New Year's. I did Thanksgiving last year, Christmas this year, and next year 'll work New Year's.
That's my favorite. I don't celebrate on New Year's Eve (there's a surprise, eh?), so I don't mind working it. If I had a choice I'd gladly work every New Year's if I could get one of the other days off.
But I don't, so tonight I'm cleaning my analyzers, reading a book, and worrying gently about Lori on her long drive to St. Louis and back to pick up her son at the airport. We all have a date to meet at home at 11 tonight for the ceremonial Throwing Out of the First Gift, which we'd done all the kid's lives to settle them down enough to sleep. All the rest of the giftage happens in the morning, per my own mother's rule: you have to stay in bed until the sun comes up. At the very weakest hint of gray sky, my brothers and I would be standing in the hallway outside my parent's bedroom asking, "Mom! Is it light enough yet? Mom?"
Merry Christmas to all of you. If you have a car wreck in Southern Illinois tomorrow tell the nurses in the ER that you have a pal in the lab, and I'll stop in to see you. Otherwise, have a nice Christmas, and save up all the good stories for the blogs on Wednesday, okay?