In the midst of tidings and tinsel, I often ask: “Why such a great fuss?”. Every year it’s always the same build-up; songs, gifts, cards, Christmas Specials – all culminating in one day which, as the years pass, becomes ever more the anti-climax. I know why I’ve grown to think of the day as such non-event. Part of it is doubtless due to my disillusionment and rejection of Christianity; but the Law of Diminishing Returns, and the great deceiver that I term The Hype Machine, have played their parts too. Public Enemy were onto something with their infamous anti-hype slogan, and at no time does the bullshit fly thick ‘n’ fast than at Xmas.
The anniversary of the birth of the Baby Jesus? Recheck those premises, friend – you’ll find the celebration of the Sun’s eventual return is closer to the mark! How about the common perception that Christmas is about altruism and enveloping the whole world in tentacles of “love”? Well, indulgence fits the mould of the original meaning much more accurately. As for this “true meaning” being drowned in the swamp of commercialism, it’s no worse than the original roots being crucified on the cross of Christianity. The religion of Consumerism is simply doing to Christianity what Christianity did to the Pagans.
True meaning? Go back further than 2000 years!
Another thing which leaves me cold about this festive season is the whole “peace on Earth, goodwill to men” message constantly pumped out; I wholeheartedly advocate benevolence, but why does it always have to be regulated to a certain day in the year (and at the tail end of the year at that?) It seems as if December the 25th is the world’s set “time-out” day from acting the cunt. I can’t help but think of that contemptible breed of worshipper who thinks going to church on Sunday gives them license to act like a total shit every other day; or the loathsome lover who thinks Valentine’s Day absolves them of all past and future sins outside those hallowed 24 hours.
Is it too much effort to carry the goodwill of the occasion beyond the occasion? I think this post by expresses the sentiment pretty damn well.
In any case, I find the effort put into this solitary day to be something of an over-exertion, especially when you compare it to the New Year. Now there’s a celebration of unsullied significance, representing not simply one day, but 365 of the buggers! A year is a sizeable chapter in the manuscript of one’s life, yet the greeting “Happy New Year” is included as an afterthought in most cards (if included at all). Comparing the ratio of Xmas cards to New Years one’s, I’m drawn to note something of an imbalance. Is it cynicism that discourages such a big deal being made out of the new year, beyond the revelries of the 31st; a fear or expectation of repeating mistakes past?
All said and done, my friends, I’m gonna say that whatever your moniker and motivations for the day, I hope you make and get the best from it. I’m also hoping that you’ll be able to carry that good ol’ Saturnalia/ Yuletide/ Christmas/ Decemberween benevolence over into – and through – the coming year. You all deserve the best, you really do and I’m hoping the best finds its way to you (or vice versa). Take care, eat, drink, be merry – and try not to murder your nearest ‘n’ dearest for that last scrap of turkey. Okay, over and out…
Every year Spydrman and I give each other gifts. They tend to be “things that are on sale for the holidays” or “things that you suddenly really need” or even “things that are finally available for purchase *right now*”. We give each other gifts throughout the year, so we do not really go too crazy for christmas, I think. And for the acutal *day* we watch movies and play video games. We don’t leave the house, we don’t talk to people on the phone, we don’t expose ourselves to christmas TV. We don’t try to visit anyone.
It makes for a nice, relaxing, holiday. I celebrate Christmas, but I also celebrate Channukah, Kwanzaa, and Solctice as well. *shrug* I keep the spirit of all the holidays all fucking year – I believe in miracles, I give love freely, I give hope and caring to others, I celebrate my family and friends, I give random gifts, and I celebrate the joy of the passing of all seasons and the cycles of nature. I don’t just do these things in December. Hell, if anything it is the one month I tend to lose track of those things. From mid-November to the end of January there is a birthday for someone I am good friends with (at *least*) every other day. Including my own. Seriously. It’s a festival of fucking birthdays. I can’t keep up with them, and I WILL NOT DO CHRISTMAS+BIRTHDAY to anyone if I can help it. No one gets a combo present from me unless it is FUCKING HUGE. I can always tell who has birthdays near Christmas as well, they are people who give me separate gifts too. 🙂
and this year, I will *really* celebrate new years. I will be *so* glad to see 2004 go. I do not normally get all excited about new years. *shrug* My birthday is in January and I tend to see that more as a marker than the change of the year. This year I am going *OUT* and I am going to party, and dance, and be really fucking happy. Because this year can not end soon enough. I hate this year. It fucking sucked. The whole goddamn thing.
But then, as with many other things, the rules that apply to 99.999% of society do not apply to me. *shrug* I am just not built with the same materials as the rest, I suppose. 🙂
Haha, you said everything I have been saying to people for these past few days. I agree entirely.
The anniversary of the birth of the Baby Jesus? Recheck those premises, friend – you’ll find the celebration of the Sun’s eventual return is closer to the mark!
I’ve said that for awhile now…but you can’t tell that to my family.
I agree with all that you said.
I can honestly say, I don’t get in the ‘Christmas spirit’ and when the day comes closer I think I become more annoyed. Annoyed at the cheery people I see, who are usually angry every other day I confront them, but when this ‘holiday’ comes about they are a changed person at least until Jan first. I suppose that can be a positive, but for me it is simply fake. As a child I used to love the holidays and now I have come to view them differently. I have a child of my own now and we celebrate Christmas…not as a mark of something from centuries ago. But as a day, a day where presents are exchanged and no one speaks of what Christmas is truly supposed to be about, or maybe we do. Maybe we do celebrate what x-mas is truly about. Ourselves, and the gifts we get. I am speaking only of my house and it’s traditions, at least how I view them. My mother would disagree, hehe.
Anyway I hope you are having a great time and all is going well. I can say my Christmas day was as all the other days in my life are. Wasn’t so bad. ^_~