It was the day of the Eighth Candle. The Taunting would be complete. The largest and most aniticipated gifts are usually given on the Eighth Candle. There is a reason for this - let's say that what the children wanted most was a game system. Well, that would be a big gift and it would upstage all of the other gifts. You don't give a gift like that on the First Candle. Also, since you know it's your Mom and Dad Type Units providing the gifts, you also know they don't have the whole state subsidized North Pole thing happening. So, if you asked for a ridiculously expensive thing you can hope that it's going to be there on the Eighth Candle, but you know if the Parental Units are both unemployed it's probably not going to be there. If you're the right kind of kid that's OK.
If you're really the right kind of kid, you tell your Parental Units that what you would really really like is the Nintendo Wii, but it's OK if it's the big Channuka gift and it's even more OK if you don't get it until January, because there's some parent out there desperately trying to convince their kids that there's some kindness and magic out in the world, and it's important to those parents and kids for that Wii to be under the tree and it was enough for us just to know it was coming.
I live with that kind of kid. We played out that scenario last year when Wii's were scarce, we were able to specifically pass on some available Wii's and give them to co-workers who needed them. We were able to gift wrap the certificate that the Wii was paid for and enroute sometime in January. The kids asked the non-jewish family members for Wii games and supplies. The non-jewish family members really had a hard time understanding why they were asking for games they couldn't play with yet. Over and over we explained - Yes the kids will be JUST as thrilled that the games will be there when the Wii comes in. They're OK with the whole delayed gratification thing. Yes. . . they are actually under 21 and American and honestly - it's really OK - if you're really worried about it you can donate to the charity the Boy Child started - that's really important to him and will make him happy. . . . yeah Her too. . . . .
So you see when you have those kinds of kids, you want the last candle of The Taunting to count. So yeah, this year the Taunting is directly related to how awesome they were last year. And because this year The Taunting was involved in Overlap, what they were expecting to be the Big Gifts were actually given to them the same morning Auntie Claus dropped by. So they had no idea what to expect. It's the beauty of The Taunting. It's not about your list, or magic or anything else except the fact that I love you, and care about you enough to mess with your head.
If you are my kid and you haven't understood the connections before Eighth Candle, Eighth Candle is where it all comes together and you ask me questions or tell me what you thought and I answer you. Sometimes they come up with connections I didn't see. All the secrets are laid out and I get to find out if I read you right. If it works well, we all know a little bit more about each other and we get cool stories to tell our relatives. Of course this year The Taunting didn't just have the Overlap, we also had the Plague.
We had arrived at midnight the night before, the Girl Child was down. The Wayward Poppets had arrived home and were gathering to tell their stories and create new ones, but by the afternoon the Plague had afflicted the Perfectly Normal Stepfather and only the Boy and I were upright.
The Taunting cannot be done by proxy, but the candles have a religious requirement to be lit before the end of the night. We waiting for a window when the Girl was able to be awake and the Perfectly Normal Stepfather had dragged himself down the stairs announcing that he damn well wanted to watch the Children open the Eighth Candle Taunting, but he needed to do it REAL SOON and far away from those of us who were not afflicted.
The Boy and I lit the candles and said the prayers loud enough for the afflicted. There is a favorite book of mine from childhood called the "All-Of-A-Kind" family. There were five little girls in 1915 or so and they came down with a fever during Passover and only one of the girls was able to be at the able with the parents to read the story and say the prayers, they made the living room a sick room and made sure the other girls didn't miss their parts even though they had to be quarentined. This reminded me of that. I'll probably write more about that too someday.
We came in and the presents that were Channuka, but not Taunting were opened. There was much quiet appreciation. Then we had them open The Last Takeout Boxes.
The Boy opened his first, the Ninja immediately proceeded to blend into his surrounding. The kindred spirits communed. The larger Ninja immediately identified that the little Ninja was a Red underneath his Fake Pants, but he was still a Ninja, and now he was where he needed to be.
And then the tired, poor, huddled mass, yearning to be healthy opened up her Takeout box and emitted a tiny quiet little squee. The Girl loves all things from Japan and some things from China. It was wonderful that these two little folk we ready to adventure out in the world just when we needed a big finish for the Taunting. The Girl has not looked at PoppetPlanet since I announced that Channuka presents were being purchased. She has seen pieces that I did not want her to miss - like Little Pink's Window but she had never seen Cherry Blossom, so she couldn't possibly expect her.
It's like a Poppet Pretending to be from the House of Flying Daggers. But she's so sweet you don't even notice she's wearing Fake Pants.
These were both One of A Kinds. These were poppets that meant that there was faith the Children would take care of them. These are toys that recognized that the Children aren't so Childish anymore, but they shouldn't leave everything behind on their journey forward.
Here are the Poppets of the Taunting. This is the picture of my children's voices being heard.
I hope I've heard them correctly, I hope they've heard me listening.
The Taunting is now Completed.
My sister got takeout box inside reference on the first try. Kudos to her.