"Getting into the spirit, so to speak?"

"You could say I'm still in the spirit."

Silence.

"Y'know, Gene, I think this would be a good time for a break. We'll be right back after this short commercial."

[Commercial shows a man buying his wife (presumably) not just a diamond, not just a car - but a diamond-studded car. "Give her the gift that says, 'This is so unbelievably ostentatious, you have to love me.' "]

"And we're back. Let's check in with Gene. Gene, what's happening in the race?"

"As they approach the first turn, My In-laws Are Coming is gaining on Festive Partygoer and Crazed Shopper. Honey Where's the Scotch is falling behind the pack. Bedraggled Host seems to already be short of breath."

"Thanks, Gene. So, Sam, what I was going to say earlier about the race is that the interesting thing is that it is not just a race. It's also an obstacle course."

"It is, Jim. Before explaining how it works - burp - let me take another gulp of the nice holiday coffee you had the crew brew up for me. Ahhh. Okay, now let me show you on the screen here. You see Thanksgiving? In this circle here? Okay. You gotta come around this way, see, and buy a turkey. Boom! Then you gotta get the trimmings. Dressing. Cranberry sauce, what have you. Boom! Then you got your family and friends and everything, and boom! You have to do all that and keep your head on straight as you face the various happy nondenominational holidays throughout December. It's not easy. Burp."

"Have another cup of coffee, there, Sam."

"Thanks."

"So, basically, what you're saying is you have to pace yourself."