Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Yuletide Geography Quiz

Some Christmas traditions are enduring. Every year, for example, in a tradition going back to when I was in junior high school, we have a Yule log cake for dessert at Christmas dinner.

Some traditions do fall by the wayside. One thing we don’t do anymore is axe-murder a whole tree. We used to, but now we just use a little potted rosemary bush decorated with gingerbread cutouts. It’s small, tasteful, and sustainable, so it works well for everyone. The only thing I miss about the full-size tree is the ritual argument with my sister over what exactly that dough ornament I made when I was six is supposed to be. (It’s a sheep, so don’t even let her try to tell you it’s a turkey. It’s clearly a sheep. With drumsticks.)

For every tradition that runs its course though, it seems a new one comes along. Here’s one that’s fairly new for me. It may not have the emotional resonance of baking Christmas cookies for Santa, and now that I think of it, there is nothing specifically holiday-ish about it, but it’s something I do every year at Christmastime nonetheless. Please join me in hosting a glass of eggnog (and then discreetly leaving it on a bookcase because nobody really likes more than a few sips of eggnog) and taking the annual San Francisco Chronicle Geography Quiz.

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