KIRBY: Why today is the longest of the year

A wonderful gift may not be wrapped as you expect.


– Jonathan Lockwood Huie

If they call Dec. 21 the “shortest day” of the year, then I nominate Dec. 26 for the longest.

It always seems to begin sometime around lunch on Dec. 25. That’s when all the gifts have been given and the anticipation of the past month concluded.

In England they turn Dec. 26 into a holiday of sorts called Boxing Day.

We Americans, capitalists by tradition, convert it into a post-holiday sale, pushing commerce to continue until year end.

SHOPPING TIP NO. 1 — And if you head to the stores in the days ahead, please follow the No. 1 rule of commercial common sense. When you enter a store door – KEEP MOVING!

The people behind you don’t need to smack into each other because of the portal logjam you’ve created. (By the way, Rule No. 2, related to Rule No. 1, is don’t try to exit a door marked “Enter.”)

If you have any doubts about what you’re looking for, move quickly to a spot away from the door, then figure our your path. This goes double in grocery stores when a cart is involved.

Personally, I think “Keep Moving” should be America’s motto. It explains our drive, our pushiness, our search for solutions.

It also explains why some of us are in this country today and not back in England celebrating Boxing Day.

YOUR MAIL: Bill Leopard, of Aiken, sent two postcards from Nashville’s Opryland.

“This place is fantastic,” he wrote, “spread all over creation.”

Bill said he and his sister were enjoying Christmas at the Grand Ole Opry, which was “really a great show.”

Farther west, Charles and Mary Reeves, of Harlem, were finding good weather in San Antonio before heading to New Orleans.

Corky and Debbie Holloway, of Evans, were in Myrtle Beach for a “beautiful, cozy, peaceful eight-day, seven-night stay … nice shopping and great dining. We attended the Coastal Carolina-Georgia Southern football game at Brooks Stadium/James C. Benton Field in Conway where CCU spanked the Eagles 28-17. We also had our pictures taken with Santa Claus at Bass Pro Shops in Myrtle Beach. Lots of fun!!”

And Norman and Margaret Jewett Taylor, of Evans, were in New York City on a Warren Baptist Church bus tour.

“Have seen Rockefeller Center Christmas tree, the play Aladdin, 911 Memorial and toured the city. We will see the Rockettes and Staten Island Ferry.”

TODAY’S AFTER CHRISTMAS JOKE: The holiday was over and two old friends were back on the golf course ready for a round.

“Say,” one asked, “what did your wife give you for Christmas?”

“She didn’t give me anything,” his pal answered. “She said I didn’t use what she gave me last year.”

“Why not?” his friend asked. “What was it?”

“A cemetery plot,” was the answer.