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Holiday survival

With Thanksgiving now already gone, I may be a little late to the party with this one, but I wanted to lay out a few tips on how to survive the holiday season, especially when spending that time with family — yours, your spouse’s, a friend’s or even just some random family you found on the street.

The holidays can be stressful, we all know that. Luckily for you, these tips will make it a breeze for you to enjoy time with the family without pulling your hair out or setting the tree on fire.

Breakfast of champions

For starters, get yourself some liquor. Save the beer and wine for special occasions and opt for something with a little more kick. Gin, rum, vodka, whiskey — it doesn’t matter, and it doesn’t have to be anything fancy, you’re not drinking it for taste.

During the holidays, you’ll want to mitigate those stress levels by imbibing several shots of liquor throughout the day, starting with a double dose when you first get out of bed in the morning.

I’m not an expert in this field, but science shows that the more you drink, the more fun you have, so don’t shortchange yourself from having a good time. Drink up and be merry, and save the sibling rivalries for backyard wrestling matches.

Holidays are about acceptance

Try something different this year and scratch those names off your shopping list all at once. As a matter of fact, take that list and throw it right in the trash.

The holidays are about acceptance, and this year you can forget about the stress of shopping for the other people in your life. Instead, just sit back on Christmas day and accept all the gifts that they bought for you. See what I did there with “acceptance?”

Think about it — all those hours of wandering around the stores looking for the perfect gift, the hundreds of dollars spent on crap that people bring back for in-store credit or something they really want, the unpleasant exchanges we have with other disgruntled shoppers. Who needs that? It can all be a distant memory for you.

Take my advice: Leave the shopping to the other guys and you’ll never have a blue Christmas again. All you have to do is sit tight, knock back some eggnog and wait for the gifts to roll in.

Traveling? Call in sick

Forget about the weather. If you don’t leave your house, you won’t have to worry about whether a snowstorm will stop you from traveling to see friends and family. Moreover, the best way to avoid fighting with friends and family is — much like avoiding pregnancy by abstinence — don’t come in contact with them and stay home by yourself.

Pretending you’re sick is always a go-to excuse to get out of holiday plans, but here are a few more:

≤ My dog ate my car keys

≤ I’ve been diagnosed with Lyme disease

≤ My refrigerator caught a cold, I have to babysit

These excuses and many more have been proven to work by experts in all familial and friendly relations. Feel free to tailor them to suit your needs more appropriately.

Just remember, if you follow the guidelines I’ve laid out, I’m confident you’ll have a wonderful holiday season. And if you do it right, you might not even have to worry about the holiday stress from your family get-together next year (because you weren’t invited anymore). Mission accomplished.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Ryan Jarvi is city editor at The Mining Journal. He lives in Marquette with his wife, Sarah, and their dog, Tino. Contact him at rjarvi@miningjournal.net.