Just Say No to Christmas | Cover Story | Salt Lake City | Salt Lake City Weekly

Just Say No to Christmas 

The guide to not celebrating Christmas

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Workin' It
Some folks would rather work through the holiday; others have no choice in the matter. Here’s how some local workers spend the day.

Whatcha Gonna Do
A moonlighting officer told us holiday beats depend on seniority, but officers with grown children and single cops sometimes step in for those with young families. “I haven’t worked Christmas in two years,” says this seven-year vet, but when he did, “between calls (usually for domestic violence), we return to the station to eat and socialize.”

Nurse Prickett
Registered nurse Jason Prickett works at Intermountain Medical Center. He’s worked “every Christmas for the last 10 years,” sometimes as the low man, but mainly—since he was single—in deference to coworkers with families. “Christmas brings out the lonely people,” he says. One holiday in Fort Worth, a homeless woman brought a Fisher-Price karaoke machine to serenade the waiting room. Few enjoyed her screeching, says Prickett, “but it made her happy.” This year, Prickett will be honeymooning in Belize.

GPC's in a Sack
Oh-nine makes two years in a row that “Jose” has worked at 7-Eleven. Before that “I was locked up,” so he’s never had Christmas off with his children. He figures a man’s gotta do, and “people only come in for batteries and beer.” The postprandial Bud rush is nuts, but that’s nothing compared to one year when an odd-looking customer strutted in as Jose was bathroom-bound. He returned to find the patron bent over, perusing the salty snacks, short skirt riding high. “She … he … I could see his fuckin’ balls, man. He must’ve been wearing a thong or something because they were really [protruding].” Merry Christmas, Jose? “Yeah … Jingle balls.”

“Dave,” runs a prominent department store. He’s worked “many” holidays in his 38 years with the retailer. It was tough with youngsters, but accepted. Ironically, now that Mr. and Mrs. Dave are “empty-nesters,” his employer no longer mandates day-after sale prep on Xmas. “We go skiing.”

Xmas Legal
Courts close on Christmas, so attorneys might work late on Christmas Eve just to get that precious 12/24 postmark. In-house corporate counsel, though, serves at the pleasure of the CEO. One night before Christmas, “Mark’s” workaholic jefe made him stay late to stitch up important affairs before the bossman jetted to paradise. “He then spent his ‘vacation’ lobbing bombs [at me] across the Pacific. I was fortunate to escape most of the post-Christmas Eve rantings.”

Tip Calculators
City Weekly’s Nick Clark pushed plates at the Stein Eriksen Lodge in Deer Valley one Christmas. He agrees with ex-Big Daddy’s Pizza driver Jim Reavis that people are 50-50 regarding Xmas generosity. Clark, who had to climb Parley’s Canyon in a little Honda Civic “while it was dumping snow,” was stiffed only once—on Christmas Eve. “They said it was the worst service they’d ever had.”
Reavis has profited from working the holiday. “It’s still a good tip day,” he says, but long waits due to weather and volume leave some people livid enough to stiff him as well.

Fitness Freaks: `Roid Noggin'
With gyms shuttered, do fitness fanatics burn off the roast beast at home? “Well hell, yeah!” says competitive bodybuilder “Jono” Markham. He keeps workout gear at home and at his day job, Eurosport Body & Paint. “Jono’s Dungeon of Pain is open!”

Snow skiing burns 413-690 calories per hour and resorts, says Ski Utah’s (SkiUtah.com) Luke Ratto, “are always open.” Sundance has nightskiing— “that’s new this year”—as do Brighton, Park City Mountain Resort, Wolf Creek, and Powder Mountain. Nick Como with Solitude says they get “about half tourists and half locals” on Christmas and may have vacancies.

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