The Caffeinated Collector: Episode 11 – It’s The Most Funderful Time Of The Year

The Caffeinated Collector: Episode 11 – It’s The Most Funderful Time Of The Year

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Anyone who knows me knows that the holidays are my favorite time of year. In addition to being known as Admiral 80’s, there are those who refer to me as Captain Christmas because of my love for the season. When I was in college, I had a bright red blazer that I wore every day from the day after Thanksgiving til Dec. 26th, and when I could find mistletoe, I would fasten a rig inside my “Ho Ho Ho” cap and have a sprig of the green hanging in front of me, so that anyone who stood in front of me was under the mistletoe. The look of concern on people’s faces when I informed them of this was quickly supplanted by a smile when I would present them with a Hershey’s Kiss from my jacket pocket. Several people told me I had made their day on those occasions, and THAT made MY day.

So, when I tell you that I love Christmas, you can trust that I LOVE Christmas. I love Christmas movies, Christmas music, Christmas TV Specials, Christmas candy, ugly Christmas sweaters, the whole bit. When people ask me “If you could do anything at all with your life, what would it be?” my answer is always “I want to be an entertainer”…but if that isn’t an option, truth is, I’d want to be Santa Claus. I’m not even kidding. If I could, I would be freakin’ Santa. For me, the Tim Allen movies are wish-fulfillment fantasies. Well, the first 2, at least. The 3rd one is really, really awful, and that’s a shame.

I love Christmas so much that I have actually volunteered to decorate trees and hang lights on houses for other people, just because I enjoy both so much. I’m kind of a dork, huh? Oh well, that’s me.

My point (and I DO have one) is this: Christmas and Star Wars have always been connected for me. When I was a kid, Christmas was when I made a veritable haul of Star Wars toys. The Sears Wish Book got well-used in my house, because I would sit and stare at the toy pages, taking in every single element. I still do that, there are a few websites where you can look at scans of old Wish Books, and I do it more often than I’m comfortable admitting. Don’t judge me. ANYWAY, some of my fondest Christmas memories have to do with Star Wars merch, from the time when I was a kid and I would wake up to find what looked like a miniature version of Echo base in my living room floor because of all the Empire toys, to this year, when I made my annual trip to Hallmark to spend WAY too much money on Star Wars ornaments (I love the Sandcrawler and the Cantina Band), Christmas has almost always meant something Star Wars-related.

My clearest memory is the year I got the Rebel Armored Snowspeeder. I was so excited! It made noise! It lit up! The guns pulsated!!! This is how much of a true fat-kid I was: The way the guns lit up reminded me of a Cola-flavored Slurpee. Still do, to this day. Now I want a Slurpee. Sigh. Anyway, I flew the Speeder back to my parents’ bedroom, where they were in the midst of their long winter’s nap, and woke my mom to show her this awesome toy that Santa had brought me. She politely said something about it being neat, and that she would look at it more later on. So I ran to the other side of the bed. At this point, I hadn’t quite figured out that my dad was not the jolly soul that I was. I woke him up, said “Look!” and hit the button for the guns. For about a second. He “politely” (quote marks indicate sarcasm) suggested that I take it back to the living room and stay quiet or else Santa might come back and take it away. My dad wasn’t as big on Christmas as I was. Clearly. But, unlike so many other times in my life, I took the hint, and took it back to the living room. Even though I had basically been yelled at, I was still high on the holiday. Not even the Grinch in the back room could quell my spirit.

I’ve been thinking about that encounter a lot this year. Last year, Christmas was pretty lame. I was living with my brother, who didn’t allow a tree to be put up, and I didn’t have a whole lot of people in my life to buy gifts for. I had just been through a divorce, and I just wasn’t feeling very Christmasy. It was disturbing to me. Had I finally outgrown it? Had the world finally beaten my Christmas Cheer out of me?

GOOD NEWS EVERYONE! (That’s the 2nd Futurama reference in this blog, the first person who identifies the other gets a shout-out next month as the coolest person on Earth)

This year has been different. I’m in my own space, I got my apartment decorated a few days after Thanksgiving (my mom always insisted the tree go up the day after, but I had to work so it happened on Saturday), I’ve been watching my Christmas shows, and best of all, my tree is overflowing with packages underneath.

See, I hadn’t realized just HOW much my world had changed in a year. I’ve made so many new friends, both online and IRL, and I’ve reconnected with old friends, and deepened connections with friends that were already in my life. I keep taking pictures of the bottom of the tree, because it serves as a reminder to me of how fortunate I am. I’m so immensely thankful that I have so many people in my life to buy presents for, AND I have the resources to get them exactly what I wanted to this year. That’s how I want EVERY Christmas to be. This is the first time I’ve ever experienced the true joy of giving, because I feel like I have something to give, and several someones to give it to. I finally feel like the give-and-take in my life is balanced. THIS is what MY Christmas should be.

I hope you all know how much you mean to me, and I hope you are feeling as grateful as I am at this time. I have a feeling that 2015 is going to make 2014 look like 2013, and that’s EXTREMELY exciting to me. Here’s to a wonderful 2014, a promising 2015, great new friends, new opportunities, and even better, MORE STAR WARS!!!!!!!

Happy Holidays to everyone reading, I hope you will continue to allow me to invade your space in 2015, I have thoroughly enjoyed the ride thus far. Thank you Dan and Cory for making me part of the CWK family.

May The Force Be With Us, Everyone. (see what I did there?)

Marvin Says Hi.

Jeff can be heard weekly on Assembly of Geeks ( and on his own podcast network, MarvinDog Media ( where he hosts The Pilot Episode, Talking Toys with Taylor and Jeff, and Bantha Banter: A Star Wars Chat Show.

Follow him on twitter: @jeffmcgeeactor and @marvindogmedia

Email Jeff at

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  1. Melinda
    December 26, 2014 at 12:26 Reply

    Merry Christmas, Jeff, and a Very Happy New Year to you!!! 😀 The same to Marvin. 🙂

    What an absolutely delightful read was your blog! I enjoyed it immensely! 🙂 Have you any idea how much you give to those of us who enjoy popping over to CWK to read your monthly offerings? Quite a lot (in case there was any question 😉 ). 😀 Thank you for everything!!!

    It is amazing what a difference a year can make. Darkness, sadness, malaise might befall one (there really isn’t any way to escape them … at least from time to time; that becomes evident the longer one lives.), but the cloud will lift (if one allows it to 🙂 ). I am so happy that you once again have found your Christmas Spirit. 🙂 It never left, I bet. It was only hiding. 😉

    (I suppose I won’t be deemed the coolest person on Earth. I haven’t any idea what “Futurama” is. I must lead a very sheltered life. lol)

    MTFBWY…Always. 🙂

  2. Jeff M
    December 30, 2014 at 14:03 Reply

    Thanks Melinda, you are always so positive and encouraging, that is enough to make you the coolest person on earth. And you’re right, it never left, it was just hiding 🙂 Also, go google “Futurama”…and if you have Netflix, start watching immediately, it’s kind of one of the greatest things ever.

    1. Melinda
      December 30, 2014 at 20:37 Reply

      You’re very welcome, Jeff. And thank you. 🙂

      Jeff, I did as you suggested, googling “Futurama”, and it sounds like it would be a fun show to watch. I’ll have to sit down to watch at least a few episodes one day soon. Thanks! 🙂

      Happy New Year! 😀

  3. Becca Benjamin
    January 4, 2015 at 17:58 Reply

    Happy New Year, Jeff and Marvin!! 🙂
    Sorry I’m so late to the party, purely circumstantial. Nevertheless, I’m here now…and WOW! Have to say, I just love your tales 😉 Your stories always, Always put a smile on my face…Thank You!

    As for the Futurama guess, I’m gonna take a shot at it 😉 Yes, I do know the show, but sadly, I do not watch it. My shot in the dark guess? “true fat-kid”….again, it’s just a guess.

    Hope you have a fantastic 2015 and can’t wait to see you at Celebration 🙂

    1. Jeff M
      January 6, 2015 at 22:06 Reply

      Thanks Becca! Always happy to amuse and warm 🙂

      And no, the other futurama reference is in the title. “Funderful” is a term that Bender the robot uses 🙂

  4. Tommy Mac aka "DJ Maul"
    January 9, 2015 at 17:35 Reply

    I much belated Merry Christmas to you Jeff.

    I can relate to the life changes to speak of; I got divorced about 5 years ago and since that time have been bouncing from other folks basements and garages with no REAL place to call “home” until this year when I finally got my own apartment!

    It’s not much, but it’s MINE.

    1. Jeff McGee
      January 10, 2015 at 12:04 Reply

      Merry Belated to you, too, Tommy! And congrats on getting your own space. It really does make the holidays feel more like they used to!

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