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    A Naughty Way To Find Out Who’s Nice

    | Buffalo, NY, USA | Children, Cousins, Theme Of The Month

    (A number of years ago my young twin cousins belonged to a “Twins Group” that was doing a Santa’s Workshop. My aunt had talked my dad into being Santa that year. When my dad went over to get the costume my one cousin had thrown a truck at his twin. Later that day, my cousin is sitting on ‘Santa’s’ lap.)

    Santa/My Dad: “Have you been a good boy this year?”

    Cousin: “Of course!”

    Santa/My Dad: “Then why did you throw that truck at your brother this morning?”

    (My cousin goes absolutely bug eyed.)

    Cousin: “You do know when we’ve been bad or good.”

    A New Year’s Resolution

    | Silver Spring, MD, USA | Aunts & Uncles, Nephews & Nieces

    (I have driven my SUV onto a median on New Year’s Eve. It has hit in such a way that the tires are on either side of the median and thus useless. No one stops to help, until a woman and her niece pull over.)

    Woman: “Hi, I’m [Name] and this is my niece. We noticed you guys were in a little trouble there. Would you like a hand?”

    Me: “It’s all right; the car is totally stuck. We’ll just have to wait for a tow truck.”

    Woman: “We can at least try. We’re pretty strong; it runs in the family.”

    Me: “You two are very kind, but it’s a big car and very heavy. Even I couldn’t budge it. Go on home and have a great New Year!”

    Niece: “C’mon, sir, at least let us try. Get in and put it in reverse; my aunt and I will push.”

    Me: *reluctantly* “Okay…”

    (I get in the car and put it in reverse.)

    Woman: “Okay, [Niece.] 1… 2… 3!”

    (The two start pushing on the car, and somehow, it moves. After a minute, they’ve pushed it clear off the median and back into the road. It’s somehow undamaged.)

    Me: “Thank you, thank you, thank you! What can I give you guys for this? How did you even do that?”

    Woman: “No need to give us anything. This is what we do. And I told you: it runs in the family. Have a great New Year!”

    (They drive away. The way they showed up at the right moment and pushed the SUV off the median undamaged, even without the use of tires, was nothing short of miraculous. To this day I wonder if they were just two very strong women, or were they something more.)

    January First, Two-Thousand And Who

    | PA, USA | Parents & Guardians

    (It is about one or two o’clock in the morning on January 1st, in my family room. I am an avid fan of ‘Doctor Who.’ My mother does not like science fiction, though she puts up with my obsession. Early in the morning of New Year’s Day, I start watching an episode from DVR. My mother, who had fallen asleep sometime before midnight, wakes up during the theme song.)

    Mom: “Please do not tell me that the first thing I am hearing this year is that.”

    Back To The Future

    | Israel | Parents & Guardians

    (It is near New Year’s Eve 1985. I am eight years old.)

    Me: “Dad, when the year changes from 1999 to 2000, will you let me stay up until midnight on New Year’s Eve?”

    Dad: “You’ll be 25 then; you won’t need my permission.”

    (I’m stunned; it’s the first time I really face the fact that I’ll actually be an adult one day, so I remember the incident well. Fast forward to near New Year’s Eve 2000, and I am 25 and living with my girlfriend. I am chatting with my dad over the phone.)

    Me: “Hey, do you remember when I was a child, and asked you about staying up late on New Year’s Eve 2000?”

    (I proceed to remind him, and he laughs.)

    Me: “…well?”

    Dad: “Well what?”

    Me: “Well, can I stay up until midnight?”

    Dad: “Okay, just since you asked, then NO! I want you in bed and ready for story-time by 8:30!”

    Like A Good Neighbor

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