It’s the homestretch of the holiday season, G&Gers, and while you still have presents to wrap and meals to make, we hope you’ll get a moment to enjoy the peace and quiet the season can bring.
Just kidding! As we say in the South, if it’s worth doing, it’s worth overdoing. And you don’t look remotely overdone yet. To help you finish what you started, we’ve prepared a special Christmas edition of The Shot, with traditions, good tidings, and words to celebrate by.
Miracle on Peachtree Street
Bonfire of the Levees
If you come from southern Louisiana, you know all about one of our favorite Southern holiday traditions—the Bonfires on the Levee. This spectacular Christmas Eve display includes fireworks, gumbo, and a 40-mile stretch of roaring bonfires along the banks of the Mississippi River just outside of New Orleans. Cajun legend says the bonfires do double duty—illuminating the way for Santa Claus and keeping the lights on for people traveling to Midnight Mass.
Either way, how could Papa Noel arrive in anything but a good mood after a flight over the blazing bayou?
Wreaths of Remembrance
Another very meaningful holiday tradition has taken root in Arlington, Virginia, where thousands of volunteers gather every December to place fresh Christmas wreaths at the graves of American service members in Arlington National Cemetery. The tradition began in 1992, when Maine wreath maker Morrill Worcester decided to drive his surplus wreaths to lay at Arlington. More than 20 years later, Worcester has founded Wreaths Across America, which places wreaths at more than 1,200 cemeteries around the world, including 245,000 wreaths at Arlington last year.
Worcester says his goal is to someday place a wreath for, and say the name of, every American service member and veteran laid to rest, believing that saying a person’s name is one small way to honor their sacrifice and keep their memory alive. Thank you, Mr. Morrill Worcester, from all of us.
Whether you’re taking a vacation or a staycation at the end of the month, the new year is always a chance to clean house on the inside and out. Our resolution is to be more like Lilly Pulitzer, the Palm Beach patron saint of barefoot dinner parties, start-ups, and being an “influencer” before that was a thing.
To ring in the new us, we will be sprinkling these Lilly quotes into casual conversation in January. You should, too.
1. “I was a gypsy, living a carefree life of ponies and tennis.” (LinkedIn profile?)
2. “A budget? How embarrassing!” (Always appropriate at work.
3. “It’s always summer somewhere.” (When someone asks the time, obvs.)
4. “I just wanted to do things my way.” (Evergreen for staff meetings.)
5. “There’s no describing the fun I had.” (Wrap-up declaration, every single day.)
This week, the team at The Shot is: Remembering that Rob Lowe is just a nice boy from Charlottesville after he cooked dinner for the firefighters who saved his neighborhood from the fires in Southern California. … Reservering tickets for The Post, the Spielberg-directed movie about the Pentagon Papers and Kay Graham, the famous hostess who was an even more remarkable newspaperwoman. … Passing along Ike’s famous White House Christmas party egg nog recipe that everyone in Washington is talking about. Guaranteed to create world peace, or just make it feel that way, if only for a night:
— Julie Mason (@juliemason) December 18, 2014