Coldkins: Getting Past the Ghost(s) of Christmas Past

Those who do not learn from history, something something something something…

So, there I was, cuddling on the couch with my Bernese Mt. dogs Juno, Libby, Clover, Sassafras, Glorafina, Moondance and Dingbat. At least I think I was on the sofa; honestly, it could have just been a giant pile of dogs. There’s no way to tell…
Anyway, I guess I dozed off for a bit, but was awakened by a gnarled, old hand.

“Did I ever tell you that I was the last person Ed Memman hired at the Press Scimitar?”

“George?” I murmured sleepily at the blurry vision of my old radio co-host. “George Lapides?”

“Mr. Memman’s policy was ‘There’s a story in every house,’” he replied, taking a seat in chair beside me.

“So,” I responded, wiping the sleepiness out of my eyes. “You’ve come back to tell my story.”

“Why the heck would I come back to tell your story?” laughed George incredulously.

“You know what I could be doing right now? Playing checkers with Bear Bryant and eating all the Dinstuhl’s candy I want. Am I in heaven or am I in heaven?”

“Well, obviously… you’re the ghost of Christmas Past,” I suggested, but at that point he had already faded into nothingness.

Another dark figure materialized in the hallway, approaching my place on the sofa…. or on the dogs…. wherever…

“Hey, Geoff,” said John Calipari, carrying a box of Gibson’s donuts. “What’s shakin’?”

“John!” I exclaimed. “You must be the Ghost of Christmas Future. Are you coming back to coach at the U of M?”

John laughed so hard that he spit up a bunch of apple fritter, which the dogs attacked with reckless abandon.

This is crazy beyond belief, I thought. I need to take notes so I can write a column about it. When you’re on deadline like I am, you’re looking for any damned thing to write a column about…

“You ain’t writin’ nothin’, home boy,” sneered former Grizz guard Jason Williams, angrily snatching the pen from my grip. “You ain’t gettin’ no interview.”

“Waitaminute,” I exclaimed, exasperated. “You can’t all be Ghosts of Christmas Past. It doesn’t work that way!”

“Who’s ready for dinner?” asked a portly bearded gentleman carrying a platter of steaming food that… frankly… smelled damned delicious.

“It’s my Elfo Special,” he smiled. “Plump shrimp sauteed in garlic and butter, tossed with white button mushrooms and white pepper, served over vermicelli and topped with a nice Parmigiano-Reggiano.”

“Waitaminute,” I stammered. “John Grisanti?”

“That’s right,” he smiled. “I’m the Ghost of Christmas Pasta.”

“Now you’re cooking!” I said, sitting down at the dining room table. “All I need now is a nice glass of chianti.”

“Actually,” replied John. “A Pino Grigio would make a lot more sense, he said, pouring the crisp golden liquid into my wine glass.

“Merry Christmas to all,” he exclaimed cheerily, “And to all a good white.”