The 00's: Year Three

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Christmas Day 2003

It was Thursday, December 18, 2003. It was morning. At my place, a knock was heard at the front door as I was watching TV on the living room couch.

My Mom looked outside from the living room and walked to the front door. She opened the front door. “Hey, you two. Merry Christmas.“, my Mom said.

“Hey, Merry Christmas to you too little sis.“, my uncle said as they both hugged. “Hey, Merry Christmas Auntie Brenda.“, my cousin said as he hugged my Mom. “Merry Christmas nephew.“, my Mom said. Then my uncle and cousin bought in their belongings.

My Mom closed the front door. I turned off the TV and got up from the living room couch. “Merry Christmas, uncle Roger.“, I said as we both hugged. “Merry Christmas to you too, little fella.“, uncle Roger said.

The hug ended. “Wow, you’ve gotten big the last time I saw you. Hey, when was the last time I saw you?“, uncle Roger said. “Probably before Jesus was born.“, I said.

“Hey, Jamal. Merry Christmas.“, my cousin said as we both hugged. “Merry Christmas, Ricoh.“, I said. That hug ended.

“I also haven’t seen you since before Jesus was born.“, I said. “Well, we’re both glad you’re finally here to spend the holidays with us.“, my Mom said. “But I have a question. How long did it take you two to fly all the way from New Orleans to Detroit before coming here?“, I said.

“A long time. So, what have you two been up to lately?“, uncle Roger said. “Well, I finally got my first-ever video game console. However, it’s the PlayStation 1. I’m hoping Santa can come through and bring me a PlayStation 2 this year.“, I said. “Ever since he got that console, he’s been playing on it a lot.“, my Mom said.

“I’ve also made a lot of new friends since the last time I saw you two. I even have a girlfriend now.“, I said. “A girlfriend too?! Wow, a lot has changed since the last time I saw you.“, uncle Roger said. “Hey, Ricoh, what grade are you in now?“, I asked.

“I’m in sixth grade.“, Ricoh said. “Hey, that’s the same grade as one of my friends. I’m in fourth grade.“, I said. “Well, I guess it’s time I show you two where you will be sleeping. Follow me.“, my Mom said.

“Wait, hold on. The SpongeBob SquarePants Christmas special is about to come on TV.“, I said. “Really? Can I please watch that show with Jamal first?“, Ricoh asked. “You sure can.“, my Mom said.

Ricoh walked to the living room couch and sat down on it next to me. I turned the TV back on. Then the SpongeBob SquarePants Christmas-themed episode appeared on the TV screen.

My Mom and uncle left the living room. “So, I’m thinking this has got to be the first-ever Christmas-themed episode of SpongeBob SquarePants.“, Ricoh said. “I was thinking that too. Man, I don’t know what I would be doing with my life right now if Christmas never existed.“, I said. Then I and my cousin continued watching SpongeBob SquarePants.

***

It was Friday, December 19, 2003. It was the afternoon. At the playground down the street from the apartment complex, it was snowing and there was snow on the ground.

I, Ricoh, and some of my other friends were at that playground. “Ricoh, I’d like you to meet some of the kids I became friends with since the last time I saw you. First off, this is my best friend Steve. We first met over two years ago.“, I said. “And over here is Steve’s big brother. His name is Kevin.“, I said.

“This is Steve’s little brother. His name is Cody.“, I said. “And over here is the girlfriend I think I already mentioned yesterday. Her name is Amanda.“, I said. “And the redhead over here is my best friend’s girlfriend. Her name is Ariana.“, I said.

“And over here are two more friends. Their names are Nathan and Brad.“, I said. “And over here is another friend I first met this past year. Her name is Jessica, but we all call her Jess for short.“, I said. “Wow, you sure have made a lot of friends since the last time I saw you. That’s gotta be like ten friends or something.“, Ricoh said.

“Actually, it’s eight. I was counting.“, Brad said. “Jamal, you didn’t tell me that your cousin was such a babe.“, Jessica said smiling. Jessica walked up to Ricoh.

“Hey.“, Jessica said smiling. “Hey.“, Ricoh said. “So, is it okay with you if I have you under my tree this Christmas?“, Jessica asked smiling.

“Sorry, not interested. But I don’t mind being just friends.“, Ricoh said. “Well, that rejection happened pretty fast.“, Ariana whispered to Amanda. “This is exactly what I was afraid of when I was trying to ask Jamal to be my boyfriend all of the last school year.“, Amanda whispered to Ariana.

“Well, it’s nice to meet you all. I’m gonna head back to the apartment complex. I’ll see you when you get back Jamal.“, Ricoh said. “Okay, cuzzo. See ya for now.“, I said. Ricoh started walking back to the apartment complex.

“Isn’t he such a babe?“, Jessica asked looking at Ricoh walk away. “Jess, the dude lives in another state. You two have no chance at all to be together.“, I said. “Not if I move to Louisiana. Then he’ll finally be mine and we can both live happily ever after.“, Jessica said.

“It looks like Jess has a crush.“, Nathan said. “Well, now that Jessica’s crush is gone, what do you all wanna do now?“, Steve said. “We could all play in the snow and make snow angels.“, Kevin said.

“All at the same time? If it’s all at the same time, I’m in.“, Brad said. “Yeah, let’s do that. We’ll all make snow angels all at the same time. Let’s go.“, I said. Then we all went ahead and started making snow angels.

***

It was Saturday, December 20, 2003. I, Ricoh, and Two Seconds To Detroit were all down in the basement of the apartment complex during the afternoon. “Okay, Ricoh, get ready to witness the greatest childhood rock and roll band of the 21st century.“, I said to Ricoh as he was sitting down.

I walked over to the camcorder. “Okay, everyone ready?“, I asked. “We’re ready whenever you are.“, Kevin said. “Okay, I’m ready. So, I guess that means everyone is ready. Okay, here we go.“, I said. Two Seconds To Detroit started performing their own rock version of Sleigh Ride.

Just hear those sleigh bells jingling
Ring tingle tingling too
Come on, it’s lovely weather
For a sleigh ride together with you

Outside the snow is falling
And friends are calling, “Yoo-hoo”
Come on, it’s lovely weather
For a sleigh ride together with you

Our cheeks are nice and rosy
And comfy and cozy are we
We’ve snuggled up together
Like two birds of a feather would be

Let’s take the road before us
And sing a chorus or two
Come on, it’s lovely weather
For a sleigh ride together with you

Our cheeks are nice and rosy

And comfy and cozy are we

We’ve snuggled close together

Like two birds of a feather would be

Let’s take that road before us
And sing another chorus or two
Come on, it’s lovely weather
For a sleigh ride together with you

And the song was finished with a closing guitar solo. “Well, Ricoh, what do you think?“, Ariana asked. Ricoh stood up and applauded.

“That was great. You all did such an awesome job with that Christmas song.“, Ricoh said. “Thanks. Ten years down the road, you’ll be wanting our autographs.“, Nathan said. Jessica walked up to Ricoh with a smile on her face.

“Hey.“, Jessica said smiling. “Hi.“, Ricoh said. “So, are you single?“, Jessica asked smiling.

“For now, yeah.“, Ricoh said. “Sweet. So, do you wanna be not single with me?“, Jessica asked. Then I got in-between Ricoh and Jessica.

“Jess, he already told you he’s not interested. Now, if you don’t mind, back off!“, I said. “Well, yeah, he may not be interested in me right now. But I’ll make him interested one way or another.“, Jessica said before walking away to rejoin the band. “Okay, what holiday song should we perform next?“, Steve asked.

“I say we all let Ricoh decide. So, what Christmas song do you want them to play next?“, I said. “I’m not sure. That’s a tough decision to make knowing that there are so many Christmas songs out there right now. You know what, just surprise me.“, Ricoh said. “Okay, that’s fine with us, dude. We’ve performed plenty of Christmas songs during our two-year existence during the holiday season. Trust me when I say that you will not be disappointed not even once.“, Steve said. “Okay, everyone, let’s all get ready for this next song. Here we go.“, I said. Then we all started getting ready for the next Christmas song.

***

It was Sunday, December 21, 2003. It was evening. Steve and Kevin were playing video games together in their bedroom with the bedroom door open.

Anna walked by the bedroom before standing near the bedroom door. “Steve, Kevin, this room is a mess. When was the last time you two cleaned your room?“, Anna said. “Don’t know. Don’t remember. And don’t care.“, Kevin said as he was playing.

“Well, you two need to clean all of this up right now.“, Anna said. “But Mom, Steve is the one that caused the mess in the first place. I had nothing to do with this.“, Kevin said. “Hey, no I didn’t!“, Steve said.

“Yes, you did. Don’t try and act all innocent now.“, Kevin said. “Well, whoever is responsible, I still want you both to clean up your room.“, Anna said. Kevin paused the game on the PS2.

“What? But that’s not fair. I didn’t cause the mess.“, Kevin said. Anna sighed stressfully. “I don’t care who caused the mess, Kevin. I have no way of knowing for sure who caused the mess. However, you two are in here almost all of the time. Therefore, the responsibility falls on you and Steve.“, Anna said.

“Well, I say that’s pure nonsense. I didn’t cause the mess, so I’m not doing it.“, Kevin said. “Excuse me?“, Anna asked. “You heard what I said. I’m telling the truth. And I don’t feel the need to clean up my little brother’s messes. Besides, he’s in fourth grade now. He should be old enough to clean up after himself. Therefore, my answer is no and that’s final.“, Kevin said.

Then Anna’s mood swings started acting up again. “Kevin, I’m only gonna say this to you one more time! Go clean up your room with your roommate! Now! This is your last warning!“, Anna said angrily. “Kevin, I suggest you do what the woman says. You don’t want to trigger her and her mood swings at the same time. That would make for a very bad combination.“, Steve said.

“Last warning? Okay, fine. If that’s how you feel, I’ll just say this one last time. No. Now, what are you gonna do about it?“, Kevin said. Anna started yelling. “Alright, that’s it! You’re grounded for 24 hours! And you’re still cleaning up this room with your brother whether you like it or not! And if this room isn’t cleaned up within the next 24 hours, you’ll be grounded for another 24 hours!“, Anna yelled angrily.

Anna slammed the bedroom door shut and walked away. Anna exited the hallway going into the living room and passing by Kevin Sr. “What in the world is going on? Why were you yelling?“, Kevin Sr. asked. “I’ve already got it handled!“, Anna said. Anna completely passed by Kevin Sr.

Back in Steve and Kevin’s room, Kevin got put in his place. “Well, I know it’s winter. But if you play with fire, you’re gonna get burnt. And that fire was an angry pregnant woman.“, Steve said. “Just shut up and help me clean this room up before I end up grounded on Christmas.“, Kevin said. Then Kevin and Steve started cleaning up their room.

***

It was Monday, December 22, 2003. In the evening after dinner, I and Amanda were sitting in my room. Christmas Time Is Here - Vocal by Vince Guaraldi Trio was playing in the background.

“Well, I have to say, it sure has been an awesome first holiday season as a couple. It’s amazing how much can change in 365 days or 366 days in a leap year.“, Amanda said. “Yeah, it sure has. It’s been an awesome first six months as a couple as well.“, I said. “Yeah, totally.“, Amanda said.

“However, there’s just one thing that’s bothering me.“, Amanda said. “Okay, you can talk to me about anything. What’s bothering you?“, I said. “Well, we’ve never kissed under the mistletoe in December before as a romantic couple.“, Amanda said.

“Aren’t couples supposed to kiss under the mistletoe on Christmas Day?“, I asked. “Well, if that’s the case, we can go ahead and get an early start.“, Amanda said. “But how are we both gonna kiss under the mistletoe without the mistletoe itself?“, I asked.

“No worries.“, Amanda said. Amanda pulled out a mistletoe from her backpack and held it over both of our heads. “Now, we can go ahead and get that early start I was talking about.“, Amanda said smiling. “You ready to tackle another romantic first with me?“, Amanda asked smiling.

Then I and Amanda stared into each other’s eyes, closed both of our eyes, and started kissing. As we locked lips, the mistletoe was still in the air and being held by Amanda. Then the kiss ended.

“So, what did you think?“, Amanda asked as she was putting the mistletoe away. “It was great. But it was so much sweeter underneath a mistletoe this close to Christmas.“, I said. “And there will be plenty more where that came from when we do it again under the mistletoe on Christmas Day. Well, I gotta go. I had a wonderful time hanging out with you today. See ya later. And merry Christmas.“, Amanda said as she was getting ready to leave. Amanda kissed me on the forehead and left the bedroom. I waved goodbye to Amanda after she left the bedroom.

***

It was Wednesday, December 24, 2003. It was the afternoon. Every child character in The 00′s series was at the playground down the street from the apartment complex including Dexter.

“Okay, everyone, it’s almost time to have the ultimate snowball fight which will be the last before the early 2000s come to a close. Here’s how it’ll go down. It will be boys vs. girls. Eight of us guys versus three of you girls. Whoever gets hit with a snowball gets eliminated. The team with the most kids left standing wins. Alright, here we go.“, I said. I got into position on the male side. “On your mark, get set, go!“, I said.

The snowball fight began. Snowballs were being thrown everywhere. No one got eliminated so far.

Then Amanda eliminated Nathan. After that, Ariana eliminated Brad. Then it was six versus three instead of eight versus three.

The snowball fight continued. Dexter was watching every second of it. Then Ariana eliminated Cody. After that, Amanda eliminated Matthew.

It was four versus three instead of six versus three. The snowball fight continued. Lots of snowballs were being thrown around.

Then Ariana eliminated Ricoh. It was now three versus three instead of four versus three. Then Kevin eliminated Jessica.

It was now three boys versus two girls. The snowball fight continued. Jessica sat down on a wooden bench next to Ricoh who was watching how the remainder of the snowball fight was gonna play out.

“Hey.“, Jessica said smiling. “Oh, hey.“, Ricoh said. “So, we both got eliminated.“, Jessica said.

“Yep, fair and square.“, Ricoh said. Jessica pulled out some chapstick from her pants pocket and put some on her lips. Jessica put the chapstick back in her pants pocket after using it.

“So, now do you wanna kiss and officially become my boyfriend?“, Jessica asked smiling. Jessica leaned in with her eyes closed waiting for a kiss. “You’re a weird girl. You know that?“, Ricoh said.

“What kind of weird? The good kind of weird or the bad kind of weird?“, Jessica asked. “Just weird. I’m gonna go sit on another bench. Please don’t follow me.“, Ricoh said. Ricoh got up and went to another bench to sit on. “Hey, wait for me! I don’t follow instructions when it comes to hot guys!“, Jessica said as she got up and ran towards Ricoh.

The snowball fight continued. Ariana ended up eliminating Kevin. Then it was I and Steve versus Amanda and Ariana.

The snowball fight continued. Then I and Steve were being chased by Amanda and Ariana who both had snowballs in their hands. Then when I and Steve had nowhere else left to run, we got hit by snowballs and were both eliminated.

“Yes, we win! We did it!“, Amanda said. “We sure did. Not even in the wintertime can these boys handle the power of the female species.“, Ariana said. “Okay, you beat us fair and square. So, congratulations. I guess.“, I said. “Yeah, great job on taking down the male species, but you got super lucky this time.“, Steve said.

“Yeah, thanks.“, Amanda said. “Now, what do we do?“, Amanda asked. “I say we add insult to defeat and humiliate them both until Christmas morning.“, Ariana said.

“What? Humiliate us? Add insult to defeat? Jamal, what is she talking about?“, Steve asked. “I have no idea. Ask them.“, I said. “Girls, what are you ta-“, Steve said. Steve got hit in the face with a snowball.

Then both girls were about to beat us up with lots of unnecessary snowballs. “Hey, why don’t we talk about this?“, I asked. Then I and Steve got hit by what seemed to be a million snowballs that were being thrown by our girlfriends. And the girlfriends enjoyed every sweet second of it.

Meanwhile, Jessica was chasing Ricoh all around the playground. “Wait up, I put on chapstick!“, Jessica said. Jessica continued chasing Ricoh all around the playground.

And the rest of the kids stood and watched all that was going on. The dog watched all that was going on with the remaining kids. “Hey, Jamal’s cousin can run.“, Nathan said.

“He should be running. There’s a crazy chick running after him.“, Kevin said. “Cody, Matthew, you’re big brother is getting hammered out there.“, Brad said. “Yeah, but unlike my little brother, I would never let Stacy take advantage of me like that. Never in a million billion gazillion years.“, Kevin said.

Kevin got hit with a snowball. “Hey, baby.“, Stacy said. Kevin turned around.

“So, what was that about not letting me dominate you?“, Stacy asked smiling with snowballs in her hands. Kevin quickly tried to make another snowball but was unsuccessful. Stacy started pounding Kevin with snowballs as Kevin fell to the ground.

Now, I, Steve, and Kevin were all on the ground being tortured by our girlfriends with balls of cold snow. “Well, there goes your other big brother being owned by a female.“, Brad said to Cody and Matthew. “Maybe we should all try and help out the guys.“, Nathan said.

“Nah, I say we wait until all the girls get it out of their system while we get entertained.“, Brad said. “Sounds like a plan to me.“, Cody said. “Best. Christmas. Ever.“, Matthew said smiling. Then the remaining kids and dog just stood and watched in the cold weather while Christmas Eve continued.

***

It was Thursday, December 25, 2003. It was Christmas morning. At my place, I was in my room sleeping in my pajamas.

Ricoh entered my room and tried waking me up. “Jamal, Jamal, Jamal wake up. It’s Christmas morning.“, Ricoh said. I started waking up.

Then I suddenly realized what day it was and rushed into the living room. I and my cousin were in the living room with my Mom and uncle. “Hey, Merry Christmas.“, my Mom said to me and Ricoh.

We both ignored my mother and ran to the presents underneath the tree. “Well, I should’ve seen that coming.“, my Mom said as we acted like wild animals. “Well, they can wish us merry Christmas later. You know, my kid is like this every year.“, my uncle said. “Hey, so is my kid. Well, at least they have one thing that they both have in common.“, my Mom said. Then I and my cousin continued opening our presents.

***

Meanwhile, at Steve’s place, the alarm clock went off in Steve and Kevin’s room. Kevin turned off the alarm while still in bed wearing pajamas. Then Steve and Kevin ran out of their bedroom and ran to the tree in the living room.

All four brothers were in the living room ripping open their presents like wild animals. “And Merry Christmas to you too.“, Anna said sitting on the living room couch with her husband and drinking a cup of hot chocolate. Then Kevin stopped for a moment and walked over to his Mom and Dad.

“Is something wrong, son? You don’t usually stop opening Christmas presents in the middle of opening Christmas presents which is a real shock to me.“, Kevin Sr. said. “Well, I guess this year is different. Mom, I stopped for a moment to apologize for how I acted several days ago. Besides, you’re carrying my future little sibling. From now on, I’m gonna start treating you with more respect. So, yeah, that’s all I had to say. Would you please forgive me?“, Kevin said. Anna put her drink down on an end table.

“Oh, of course, I forgive you. You know I can’t stay mad at you forever. Come on, give your pregnant Mom a hug.“, Anna said as she opened up for a hug. Kevin went over to his Mom and hugged her. “I love you, Mom.“, Kevin said as he was hugging Anna.

“I love you too, sweetie.“, Anna said as she was hugging Kevin. The hug ended. “Now, you can go ahead and continue opening up your presents with the rest of your little siblings.“, Anna said. Kevin rushed back over to the Christmas tree and continued opening his presents with the rest of his brothers.

***

It was Christmas evening. At Steve’s place, Christmas Canon by Trans-Siberian Orchestra was playing in the background in the living room. In the living room, I and Steve were sitting with our girlfriends on the living room couch listening to Christmas music.

“Well, this sure has been a great Christmas. Kevin and Ricoh are gaming buddies for the night, Cody and Matthew are in their room probably enjoying their presents, the dog is sleeping in his crate, and my parents are in their bedroom still waiting for the new kid to arrive.“, Steve said. “And my Mom and uncle are at my place one more night before my uncle and cousin have to leave tomorrow morning to fly back to New Orleans.“, I said. “I’m not gonna say this has been my best Christmas ever, but it should be in the top five.“, Ariana said. “And it was a great Christmas Eve yesterday when we both turned you two into snowmen.“, Amanda said.

“Ha, ha, ha. You girls can laugh it up now, but we’ll get you next year.“, Steve said. “It has also been a great year as well. Amanda becomes my girlfriend, Ariana becomes your new girlfriend, and my first day at a new school wasn’t really all that bad back in September.“, I said. “And now it’s on to the middle part of the decade.“, Steve said.

“Speaking of middle, we both know another word that also starts with the letter m.“, Amanda said. “Oh, yeah? And what’s that?“, Steve asked. Amanda and Ariana had mistletoes and held them over our heads.

“Well, I guess every Christmas deserves a cherry on top.“, Steve said. “Did you remember to put on some chapstick?“, I asked. “Of course, I did. Did you?“, Steve said.

“Yes, I did. But how much is enough though?“, I said. “And how much is too much?“, Steve asked. “Ugh, just shut up and kiss us!“, Ariana said.

Amanda and Ariana went in and started locking lips with me and Steve. Then that got me and Steve to stop talking. Both mistletoes were still hanging over all four of our heads. The Christmas music continued to play in the background. And it all turned out to be an overall great Christmas the rest of the way.

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