Sometimes I think I am the penultimate slob.

Take for example the other day when I was talking with Denise here at the office. Denise, by the way, is the person who greets you at The Chieftain when you walk in the door. She takes the place of Julianna who worked the front desk for almost four years, but Denise will be just fine taking over.

But I digress. There I was, jabbering on, trying to sound important and wise when, not unlike an ICBM exiting a missile silo, a tiny bit of the hardboiled egg I had for breakfast at my desk shot from my mouth. Where it landed I couldn’t say, but trying to be clever and astute, I think I said something like, “oops.”

I’ve been replaying that incident in my mind ever since then and hoping she hadn’t noticed, but whatever the case it can’t be unseen and it totally negates the suave demeanor I ineptly strived for. No Cary Grant here, for sure.

But really, it comes down to another one of those embarrassing public boo-boos that just happen. And ultimately make us more human.

Who can say none of these foibles haven’t happened to them?

• Waving back at someone who wasn’t actually waving at you.

• Pulling on a door that says push in big letters.

• Gossiping about someone and find out they’re standing right behind you.

• Getting caught peeking into someone’s shopping basket.

• Getting the hiccups during a serious meeting.

• Pretending not to see someone at the store because you don’t have time to chat.

• Calling your child by your other child’s name, or brother’s name, or sister’s name.

• Talking with your pet as if it were a real person.

And one more, something that happened just last Thursday. Having a conversation about something and wanting to relate it with a movie, but forgetting both the name of the movie and the star of the movie. You say, “You know. That guy,” you say. “He’s the one that was also in that other movie that was so good. You know who I’m talking about...”

And then later when the topic of the conversation has changed you suddenly blurt out the name you blanked out on.

Sometimes I think, “Man, I am getting old…” or, “I’m having a senior moment.” Yes, that may be true, and if that’s the case I think was having senior moments even when I was a little kid. I mean, back then I could remember everything, whether they happened or not.

Hey, I don’t mind growing older, it’s just that I never know at what point I will be “old.”

Christmas shopping, however, is one thing that never gets old, and I’m fighting off the temptation to do it all from the comfort of my couch and laptop. Gone are the days of thumbing through the Sears-Roebuck catalog and picking out things that fit into the Christmas budget.

Anyway, we pretty much like to do our shopping in town; Magdalena first, Socorro next and Albuquerque if need be. And there’s a method to the madness: find what we like, check online for customer reviews, and then go back to the store to purchase.

Speaking of that, I was at Walmart Tuesday evening standing in the checkout line behind a lady that had a stack of, maybe 10, Christmas DVDs. I peeked around, and they were all the well-known cartoon Christmas specials and movies, from Frosty The Snowman to Mickey’s Christmas Carol to Frosty The Snowman.

The store was actually very busy, and here it was four whole days after the day after Thanksgiving. Back in the dark ages when I was very young they didn’t used to call the day after Thanksgiving Black Friday, but it was the first “official” day of Christmas shopping when stores put up their decorations and introduced all the new products for gift giving, or as we now say “gifting,” as in, “I am gifting too many gifts to my grandchildren this Christmas.”

This week wreaths and holly and lights are going up on the poles along California Street, and city workers are decorating the big tree across from city hall. The Electric Light Parade will light up the darkness on Saturday night and there will be a fine seasonal celebration around the plaza, with luminarias galore.

All of this, I tend to believe, exemplifies our little community’s respect for tradition and appreciation of the simpler joys of life. Yes, we have our Ipads and androids, cell phones and one-cup coffee makers, TVs with a screen the size of Montana and gadgets that talk to you. But when you get down to basics, what really matters is who we are and how we get along, keeping that holiday spirit alive.

I just have to remember to swallow before I open my big fat mouth.