My mission for Christmas is to spread good tidings and holiday cheer and guide shoppers with their purchases.I headed to the department stores this past weekend. While on patrol duty I made several observations; holiday shoppers are quite grumpy, unorganized and do not come equipped with the proper knowledge of gift buying. I was in a check-out line that must have been six miles long when I heard the cashier screaming, "Price check, aisle one." Those dreaded words.The man holding things up was purchasing pots and pans for his beloved.So eight days later I was still in line and I just couldn't contain myself any longer.I yelled over to customer service and said, "Hey, would it be quicker if I got out of line to get the price for you? But what I really wanted to say was, "Hey, mister, forget the pots and pans and buy your wife some jewelry if you want to make her happy."Anyways the man finally stepped out of line and said he would get the price. I mumbled, "Thank you, thank you, thank you."Being in the holiday spirit I forged on my merry way to the next store on my list.Once again I had my purchases and would have been next in the check-out line when I heard it again, "Price check. I thought, no way, this cannot be happening to me again! This time it was a vacuum cleaner price check.I couldn't contain myself this time. I said, "Sir, are you sure you want to buy that for your wife? You might want to rethink that purchase. It's really not a good idea to make the wife mad on Christmas. It's kind of dangerous, actually." The result could be a burnt turkey, instant mashed potatoes, and eating from paper plates and plastic utensils. Or worse yet, a potpie. I told him that he might want to trade that vacuum cleaner in for silver or gold.Of course he didn't listen to me. He will be sorry, I'm sure of it. He will probably have kitchen duty for the year 2002. Serves him right.I sent out a memo years ago to all my family that said, no appliances, no kitchenware, just pretties, pretties and more pretties.I finally made it to the mall. Yippee, jewelry stores! I observed patrons purchasing jewelry for their loved ones. Finally, shoppers who were with the program. I was quite happy with my mall shoppers. And then I heard the announcement, "The mall will be closing in 15 minutes." What is up with that? I wasn't even close to being finished. Darn the bad luck! I didn't have even a single gift for me.But then I reminded myself I already received my Christmas present.It came on Thanksgiving morning at 8:11 a.m. Actually it was not supposed to arrive until mid December on my birthday.Weighing five pounds, 12 ounces, it was a baby girl named Maddie.She looks just like a little porcelain doll. Her brother, Kole, who is 11 months old, looks like a third grader next to her.But I was thinking, I'm kind of glad she wasn't born on my birthday because I would have to share my presents. And sharing is way overrated.Being a December baby I always got cheated at Christmas time; it never failed. I'm debating on changing my birthday to June.Anyway, I'm thinking I did a great job spreading Christmas cheer. After all, it's a mission I take to heart. So men, take some advice -- if you want the new year to be a good one, buy only trinkets and pretties. Don't worry about maxing out the credit card; it's a small price to pay. Hey, I'm just trying to save the male population from heartache and heartburn.