‘Twas the fifth night of Hanukkah, when all through the house
Came the faint sound of beeping (heard not by my spouse
Who, though totally youthful–attractive, endearing–
Has grown just a wee bit–okay, a lot–hard of hearing).
The teen had been nestled atop of her bed
With laptop and iPhone and “homework” (she said),
While Jack with his Kindle and I with my ‘Pad
Had just settled our brains from all the booze that we’d had
(While raising our cups to the anniversary [sixth]
Of our very first date, which is why we had fixed
The candles so late in the menorah that eve
And then done what you shouldn’t, which was to get up and leave).
When out in the hallway there arose such kvetching
I sprang from our bed! I jumped up! Without stretching!
‘Twas the teen–with a shriek–down the stairway a’tripping
The peals of the smoke alarm steadily ripping!
Away down the staircase I followed—I flew!
Forgetting my glasses (cause I’m stupid, nu?).
And what to my wondering eyes should appear?
Not much; sans lenses, I’m blind, I fear.
Smoke billowed and pillowed; what tsuris! What horror!
Were those flames rising up from our gorgeous menorah?
“Oh my God!” the teen yelled; “Oh my God!” I repeated.
She grabbed up a towel and on the menorah she beated.
“Is that a towel?” I asked. “Why are you doing that? Why?”
“To smother the flames!” “But you’ll catch fire, and die!”
She pulled the towel back, and we huffed and we puffed
And within a few moments the flames we had snuffed.
Then there in the ruins I searched for the roots of
A fire of such force, of such holiday chutzpah.
“Did the candles fall over? Did they set fire to the matches?”
“Good God, Mom, go back up and put on your glasses!”
Away to my bedroom I flew like a yutz
To snatch up my lenses and wipe at their shmutz.
“Come, PeePaw,” I cried to my husband, “Come, Jack,”
“The menorah caught fire! It’s a schanda! Ack!”
And then in a twinkling we raced down the steps
(After time out for tinkling; the distance’s a schlep!).
Jack spoke not a word but went straight to the sector
Where the beeping still rose from our brave smoke detector
And laying a ladder aside of the wall
He knocked the thing down! (I couldn’t! I’m small.)
Then ‘round the menorah our family we clustered
To gaze at the mess that this fire had mustered.
We shook when we looked, like a belly unbelted!
Begosh and begorrah! The menorah had melted.
The candle-holders themselves made no claim to astonish,
Each still intact, from Night One to the Shamus.
But the Lucite base was the object most damnable
Because Lucite is plastic. And plastic is flammable!
“Good golly!” I sang out, in spite of myself,
“Where’d we get this piece of garbage?” “Be quiet, you elf!”
Said my husband, who was obviously feeling defensive:
This product, so schlocky, had been quite expensive.
And then he explained, once he’d thought theruponukkah,
That he’d bought it online for our first married Hanukkah.
So let me exclaim while I’m still feeling furious:
Don’t order your menorah from a source that is spurious!
Don’t order at all! Get off your tuchas, all right?
Online Hanukkah can kill you! Oy vey and good night!
But I’ll leave with a message from this Meanopause half-goy:
There’s still three nights to go. And then Christmas. Oh boy.
On the first night of Hanukkah, my mother gave to me
Nothing, because the gift she’d ordered was from an artist on Etsy.
On the second night of Hanukkah, my mother gave to me
Two bags of gelt, because the gift she ordered on Cyber Monday
Hadn’t shipped by Hanukkah Sunday
Nor had the gift that she’d ordered from Etsy.
On the third night of Hanukkah, my mother gave to me
Three pairs of socks!
On Nordstrom Rack she wished a pox
For a note of “damaged packing”
On my real gift’s UPS tracking
Two bags of gelt because the gift she ordered on Cyber Monday
Hadn’t shipped by Hanukkah Sunday
And no response from the artist who’d posted on Etsy.
On the fourth night of Hanukkah, my Mother gave to me
Four spinning dreidels
Because my too-big Kate Spade bangle
Was unreturnable by mail
(It had been a final sale)
Three pairs of socks, two bags of gelt
And another query to the artist on Etsy.
On the fifth night of Hanukkah, my mother gave to me
Five frozen Trader Joes’ latkes!
Four spinning dreidels
In lieu of my Kate Spade bangle
Three pairs of socks
Because of my gift’s damaged box
Two bags of gelt
And nothing whatsoever from Etsy.
On the sixth night of Hanukkah my mother gave to me
Six powdered donuts because my gifts still hadn’t shown up
Five frozen latkes because of undelivered tchotchkes
Four spinning dreidels while she wore my big fat bangle
Three pairs of socks instead of whatever was in that damaged box
Two bags of gelt, which were better, though, I felt,
Than that nothing that she’d ordered from Etsy.
On the seventh night of Hanukkah my mother gave to me
Seven promises to go shopping!
The type of mad she was was hopping!
Which was maybe why she was drinking!
While the candlelight was winking
From our just-lit menorah
While she recounted the horrah
Of that bitch Yvonne from Banana Republic
Who had another think to come if
She thought she gave two shits about
Her stupid shipping policy.
On the eighth night of Hanukkah my mother gave to me
Eight gifts she ran out and bought!
You could tell she spent a lot!
On top of all the money that she’d wasted
And all the notes she’d cut and pasted
Tracking packages that won’t turn up
Until the last candle’s burnt up
‘Cause Cyber Monday blows when Hanukkah shows up so
Happy Holidays to you and yours from all of us here at Meanopause headquarters, where we spent every last waking minute of last month (except for Cyber Monday) trying to write a novel for “NaNoWriMo” (National Novel Writing Month). Obviously, we shouldn’t have taken that Cyber Monday off.