For some, Christmas is a chance to spend money they don’t have in order to buy presents no one needs for people they’d rather not spend their precious vacation days seeing. For yours truly, it’s a time to cut out of work early, park inside my tiny Main Street apartment, crank the electric baseboard heaters, and do nothing at all.

In honor of that do-less, self-gifting spirit, I sat in the creaky office chair I found on the side of the road on my birthday last year and recorded one of my favorite holiday stories — “The Gift of the Magi,” by O. Henry — which my father read to me every year on Christmas Eve when I was a kid. However, no holiday special would be complete without carolling, so I picked up the acoustic guitar after a few swigs of Old Grandad and improvised a story about Santa actually being some guy named Steve who lives down the street.

With that, I’ll leave this podcast here next to a glass of spiced eggnog, and hope you’re enjoying the company of those that matter most.


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She got out her curling irons and lighted the gas and went to work repairing the ravages made by generosity added to love. Which is always a tremendous task, dear friends — a mammoth task.