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They Can Have Their Holidays.


The Sage Nabooru
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Last year I realized that I hated Christmas so much that I didn't care whether I ever celebrated it again.

 

Let me explain. Now we're having it shoved in our faces by the Great Commercial Empires by September and October, Hollywood is making ever more paltry, lukewarm and disgustingly sappy movies about it every year, and canned Christmas musical crap follows us every step we take through those nasty hidden speakers known as Muzak.

 

Every year TV aims to be politically correct yet as narrow-minded as possible, by, say, having a commercial featuring carolers dressed in plaids and jingle bells with little sprigs of holly and pine everywhere, jovially belting out "We wish you a happy holiday....." Yeah, just stop trying, all right? I can smell the Christmas from here. I don't think that Jewish, Muslim, and other non-Christmas-celebrating people are going to be placated by "holiday" when the rest of the commercial screams Santa like any of a number of annoying singing dancing red-wearing dolls that come out each winter that are given to people as presents even though they serve no purpose other than to provide the giftee with the opportunity to wonder what they're going to do with such a stupid dancing, singing Santa doll.

 

And even this isn't good enough for lots of people. The fact that the media pounds Christmas into our heads with Santa, trees, socks hanging from fireplace mantels, reindeer, bells, mangers, and uses the word "holiday" even when all the rest of this garbage is geared towards the Christian holiday known as Christmas to an offensive degree, is unbelievable to some people. After all, didn't the Christians forcibly convert and slaughter thousands of pagans to take over their heathen winter celebration and call it "Christmas"? Is it not thus their very own? How dare people celebrate it without even giving credit to the Christian leaders who perverted the pagans' celebrations. Unspeakable.

 

And now, what with all the commercial build-up and Christian-fundamentalist-vs.-normal-people to-do, that one single day of the year - December 25 - comes and goes and brings on the greatest sense of disappointment. The stores and media empires have been sending you the message that this is the Single Greatest Day Anybody Could Ever Have In Any Year Ever, the Christians have been drumming it in that it's important. I imagine when you're a kid it feels that way, since you can't buy yourself any of your presents if you don't receive them, but as an adult the day, which is spent wearing uncomfortable clothing, being with relatives you could really care less about, watching corny television specials and trying to figure out how to feed and seat everybody, and then get left with a sinkful of dirty good china that's too fragile to go in the dishwasher and piles upon piles of paper-based trash, is nothing short of a serious leftdown. Especially considering that your appreciation of presents has considerably lessened from when you were a child, from "OHMYGODOHMYGODOHMYHOD IT'S JUST WHAT I ASKED FOR OHMYGODOHMYGOD THIS IS FANTASTIC HOLY CRAP!!!!!!!!!" to "Oh, thanks. I wanted this. Now I won't have to buy it myself. Thanks for saving me some money. That's a nice convenience." The reward just isn't worth it anymore.

 

So I say, the Christians who are clamoring for the exclusive rights to celebrate their overblown holidays - are welcome to them. I ask only to have Halloween exclusively to us non-Christian folks, to celebrate in pagan revelry, and it seems Christians are increasingly wanting it that way themselves as well, so everybody wins. People turning away from Halloween will lower the commercial push to promote it, which will make it all the more special to break out the heathenism when the day comes. They can have Easter too. Pastels are only enjoyable when they're on guys dressed in 80's clothes, whereupon they become incredibly sexy; otherwise they're annoying to an incredible degree, and I can do without the general Easter cutesiness. From now on I will only give presents to people because I like them and I felt the need to appreciate them with something that I found that I thought they'd really, really like, not because I am socially obligated to buy something, anything for somebody I could care less about.

 

Anybody agree?

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i hate how Hannukah has become "jewish christmas."

 

it's a minor holiday, first of all. the historical significance of the holiday is overshadowed by the gift giving/merchantile angle... which isn't even the point of the festival. the point of the festival is crushing unbelievers who dare defile the Temple!!

 

gift giving at Christmas is funny to me... because that's really a throwback to the Roman holiday "Saturnalia." (and nothing really to do with the "Magi")

 

even when I was a fundie I hated Christmas and Easter. I refused to go to church on those holidays because that's when all the "nominal Christians" came out with their fancy clothes and stole my seat , etc.

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Wow you too? In the past few years or so, xmas has lots its lux for me. I hate seeing the same cheesy crap every fucking year, and I hate the concept of santa claus and how the cheesy shows and movies aimed at families say that he's out there, as if santa is god or something.

 

I've also started to hate xmas music especially the ones that are about jesus. Why are we singing about a non-existent entity? And even if you are xian, why are you singing about some dead guy? Frankly even as a xian I never cared about "celebrating the birth of christ, the savior of the world!!!" Fuck that.

 

Sorry if I sound like I'm pissed off but I just have a lot of angst about that. I wish we could celebrate the holidays without it being centered on god or santa claus. I've also quit exchanging xmas gifts with friends, now its just family only. Heck even decorating the xmas tree has become tedious, I leave that to the 'rents now and I really don't miss out.

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Not so fast there. Easter is mine, I tell you! Mineminemineminemine! As far as I'm concerned, cute wabbits and mass quantities of chocolate are the reason for the season. (Although I do see your point about pastel colours... Bleah.)

 

And Christmas is an easy one to repair. I celebrate Yule instead, and do so by inviting everybody I know over for dinner on the shortest day of the year. (And by staying the heck out of shopping malls till, oh, the middle of January or so.)

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Instead of Christmas we can celebrate Newtonmas. Sir Isaac Newton's Birthday!

 

Sir Isaac Newton was born December 25, 1642. He made important advances in science and mathematics, held a professorship at Trinity College without joining the clergy, and had a thing for apples. What more could you ask of a secular holiday's figurehead?

 

Newtonmas is the celebration of Newton's birthday. It begins with decorating the apple tree. Because it's not nice to kill trees to bring them in your house, it's best to get something green and treelike and put apples, preferably synthetic ones, on it. But if you have a living apple tree in the yard, decorate it festively with lights and ornaments.

 

Newtonmas morning everyone gathers around the Newtonmas Tree (although not before everyone has showered, dressed, and brushed their teeth and had a bite to eat) and exchanges gifts of knowledge. These gifts are usually books, but CDs, videos, and other media are okay so long as they substantially contribute to the recipient's intellectual development. People with a lot of time and patience may also give free lecture passes, good for a free lecture on some topic in the near future. Creativity is encouraged, so be prepared for some `special' gifts.

 

With gifts exchanged, everyone begins the most important Newtonmas tradition, procrastination. Now that you have new sources of knowledge, it's time to get busy not absorbing their contents. Eat a big meal, take a nap, talk with friends and family. Just do anything but be productive.

 

Start celebrating Newtonmas this year with friends and family. Everyone will be smarter for it.

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What, you Scrooges have never heard of Festivus? :Doh:

 

I still like Xmas - mostly the cheesy novelty songs and the few really great xmas movies/shows (A Christmas Story, Rudolph, The Grinch, etc.)

 

Also the cookies. Plus, it's a great excuse for a turkey dinner. :yum:

 

I also like the family/friends aspect: parties, watching the kiddies rip open their presents. And the decorations are pretty cool, too.

 

I live in Michigan - we need some colored lights and animatronic Santas to liven up the long, dreary winters. Actually, we should hold it sometime in February instead of December. :scratch:

 

However, I wouldn't mind getting rid of the whole xtian aspect of it and just have a day of secular fun (and a paid day off).

 

 

Easter on the other hand, we could get rid of completely. It's an affront to the Cute Bunny™! :nono:

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I say keep the holidays (since I like freebies) but really play up Santa and the bunny. Take old jesus right out of both. Rename them if possible just like the xians did when they stole them. I tried calling xmas Saturnalia this last year but caught a lot of flak from my family ("you'll wreck it for the little ones") so I backed off a bit (when the kids were around but I only acknowledged Santa and not jesus).

 

But I guess if it comes down to keep them as-is or ditching them then I say ditch them since I'm already feeling the anxiety building and the damn holiday is still months away.

 

What, you Scrooges have never heard of Festivus?

I've got my pole ready, then we'll have the airing of grievences and then it's just a matter of choosing who goes first in the test of strength. Did I miss anything? :) "A festivus for the rest of us."

 

mwc

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I have been un-christian for a while, so I don't do Xmas or Easter in my own home, except very nominally...no Xmas at all, but on Easter I do eggs (because I like it).

 

In other homes with children that I love I do presents and I do Easter Eggs and chocolate bunnies. I have an old card that I haul out every year that shows two chocobunnies, one with a big bite out of the ass saying "My butt hurts!" and another one with the ears eaten off saying "What? What?"

 

I am always invited to Mass and/or Church and I always say, "Maybe next year."

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Instead of Christmas we can celebrate Newtonmas. Sir Isaac Newton's Birthday!

 

Sir Isaac Newton was born December 25, 1642.

 

I loooooove it! :fdevil:

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Oh god, I hate the holidays now.

 

Why do I hate it? Because I hate all of these parents who bend over backwards to get their little brats hundreds and thousands of dollars worth of gifts that they will never use AGAIN!

 

It is so commercialized and overdone...Really I don't get offended by it because it has little to no mention of Jesus...But the fundies take up the slack.

We have one Jackass minister who rents out Reliant stadium during the Holidays to have city wide revivals...The 4th largest city in the nation allows someone to do that shit. It boggles my mind...

 

Of course I don't go. I rather like my Jesus free life...atleast I am beginning too...

 

I don't mean to be scrooge because I love buying for myself on the Holidays...And I fully intend to get my cat some new toys...

However, NONE of this shit is from the heart. It is just every fat capitalist pig dog's marketing wet dream come true...The bottom line is money....

 

I feel that Scrooge had the right idea...BAH FUCKIN HUMBUG!

 

Me, I plan to volunteer in a soup line and help the poor. I would like to actually contribute to someone who needs it...Not getting these fat lazy little punks a new IPOD or playstation.

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I am seriously considering Festivus this year.

 

Or a pagan festival. Much better to spend the winter days outside, celebrating nature with ceremony rather than watching shitty Christmas specials on TV.

 

I can also just go without celebrating anything. Like I said, I only want to give presents to people when I truly want to give presents to people. That makes the giving all the more special and meaningful.

 

I also dislike children, which may be a big part of why I hate the holidays. I see no point in warning nasty little brats that they won't get presents if they're bad, and then ruining credit scores buying for them anyway. I know many a child who never deserved a single Christmas present in their life. And that's what the Christmas Media Empire panders to - there is nothing more important, not God, not country, not love, to a child's life than Christmas. If your mother or father fails to be there on Christmas morning because they callously decided to work the 12-hour shift up at the hospital, the TV movies say, they're cold and your childhood is ruined. Magical season my ass.

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Personally, I rather like the music--sans the lyrics. I've several CDs of instrumental "holiday" music, and it's some of the most relaxing stuff I've ever heard. I've been known to break them out in the middle of the summer when I've had a rough day and need to wind down or just want to hear something "easy."

 

Okay, so it's not all instrumental. I've a few "Classic Xmas" CDs with recordings by the "greats"--i.e. Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby, etc; but those have absolutely nothing to do with the songs being sung. ;)

 

I'm also a big fan of some of the movies, but some of those are simply of sentimental value (A Charlie Brown Xmas), and all the others just endorse the ideas of friendship and kindness--the kind of movies that are only barely removed from being completely secular by their cultural recognition of the holiday.

 

That said; yeah, I'm fully on board with doing away with all the super-consumer season crap and taking a few days off work to take it easy and "celebrate" just because we can. This is one of the few areas in which I actually agree with the J-dubs; I've a friend of that persuasion, and every once in a while he and his Mom will just up and take off from town or work for a private celebration, completely out of sync with the rest of society, just because they decided when they woke up that morning that it seemed like a good day to go have fun.

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Outside in STL on Dec 25...ooookaaay...been there, done that, froze my ass off (it isn't that it is very cold, it is that it is typically cool-to-cold and wet).

 

My parents did all they could to be home on Christmas, though my dad would often get stuck with call. And he'd get called in. Never got too bent about it, seeing as he was saving someone else's life at the time, in all likelyhood. (Sometimes, you need to be the miracle). Illness and accidents don't keep calendars, you know.

 

Maybe it was that Christmas for my family has usually been just us, and maybe a couple of friends on that day, with good food and us kind of relaxing. At least that is how my family does it.

 

Don't pay the commercialism much attention, myself, just let it fade into the background, or come up with perverse versions of the lyrics of overplayed songs in my head (heh). Now that I don't have to go to a church and hear Holst murdered the night before, it's a lot more pleasant.

 

It also is also at the beginning of my favorite season of the year, so nyah!

 

I guess what I am trying to say is that while I like still like Yule/Christmas/whatever, I'm not all gushy about it.

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Wow you too? In the past few years or so, xmas has lots its lux for me. I hate seeing the same cheesy crap every fucking year, and I hate the concept of santa claus and how the cheesy shows and movies aimed at families say that he's out there, as if santa is god or something.

 

My sentiment entirely, plus having to put up with fucking relations who I hate. I don't mind the Santa aspect of it so much, at least Santa doesn't send you to hell if you don't believe in him, he just cares whether you've been naughty or nice.

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the funniest thing to me about clepto-Christianity is how they stole Easter, but didn't even bother to try to cover up the name. I never saw "Easter" in the bible.

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I hate the concept of santa claus and how the cheesy shows and movies aimed at families say that he's out there, as if santa is god or something.

I've had my beard for 33yrs. I have a rather plain face without it. Besides, many businesses give me the senior discount without asking if I am one.

My wife and I were in a resturant close to Dec. 24. Grandparents and their grandson were there. The grandmother actually came up to our table and whispered the kids name. She didn't ask if I would play along or try to slip me any money, just assumed I'd jump up and ho,ho,ho all over the place. I can not believe how christmas brings out the absolute stupidity in people. :twitch:

I have to tell you though I like "good" Friday. During the scourge scene as the whip hits I say thank you, sir, may I have another?

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the funniest thing to me about clepto-Christianity is how they stole Easter, but didn't even bother to try to cover up the name. I never saw "Easter" in the bible.

"Clepto-Christianity". :lmao:

My former church actually started calling Easter "Resurrection Sunday". :rolleyes:

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The over-commercialization of Xmas tends to make me smile; I know the Jebus-freaks hate it and how antithetical it is to their stupid holy day, so I'm fine with it. I even hope it gets worse. Let commercialism kill Jebus-day.

 

Being Heathen, I just think on the more genuine, pagan aspects of the holidays. The Xian elements don't register on my radar for the most part anymore. I have other things to focus on than baby Jebus crying because no one remembers him on his birthday, so I can still enjoy the holidays, have fun with the usual merriment, and not feel bad about it.

 

Personally, I'd only hate the holidays if my life were in the shitter. Those were the only times I did. If my life is going well, I enjoy things. Religious aspects have no bearing on how I feel about holiday times.

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I'm going to be one of the odd ones out and say I LOVE Christmas. I've already started Christmas shopping and I'll be done LONG before it actually gets here (though I love trolling malls during the season.) On November 1st I'm loading my Mp3 player with Christmas music that I'll jam too till after New Years.

 

I used to hate Christmas because I was always the one who got stuck doing all the shit to "pull off the show" so to speak for my family. Doing all the cooking, all the cleaning, all the shopping, all the trimming ALL BY MYSELF without any help. It sucked royally. I was too tired to give a shit when the stupid day finally came and was just glad it was over.

 

Then one year I thought to myself, "Screw it. I don't care what anybody else wants anymore, *I* want to enjoy Christmas again like I did when I was a little kid." So I did and still do. I watch all the Christmas specials I have on tape, some of them being so old I'm laughing at how fun the commercials were "back then." I bake cookies and make a mess with the icing. I giggle at cute little figurines and make silly noises at pretty lights and decorations. I make the best roast duck dinner you've ever tasted with all my friends and the people who are genuinely special to me. Or I just go over to another friend's family's house for dinner because I've made it clear I'm not interested in spending time with my own family because they always have a miserable time. My friends and I help trim each other's trees together, help with dinner and cleaning, sing off key to Christmas songs (or substitute dirty lyrics), and just in general go nuts however we feel like it. Some years we go to the movies, other years we go out for Indian food for dinner, and sometimes we just hang out together drinking cocoa and nibble gingerbread while we talk by the fire.

 

Yeah, so, I love Christmas. I love the cheesy messages and an excuse to feast and look at blinky lights. That's what Christmas is all about Charlie Brown...the "Ooo! Shiney!" Factor.

 

*sings* "I'm gettin' nuttin for Christmas...."

 

P.S. I learned recently that the reason stores start promoting Christmas earlier and earlier is because many of them make 2/3's of the money they need for the whole year during that time just to stay in business. I guess in that case I can cut them slack and ignore the commercialism...and I'm ALWAYS nice to retail workers during that time.

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I guess I'm with a lot of people here in that a big part of the misery of Christmas/Easter is seeing my relatives. It's true, you just can't pick them, God knows if I could I would. Family get-togethers are typically about:

 

Dad's family: watching everybody getting drunk (I don't drink) while exasperatingly obnoxious cousins and un-funny uncles drag out everything to take at least five times longer than it should, no conversational skills whatsoever (think constant interrupting and voices turned up to max volume as everybody just speaks into the air trying to gain everyone's attention) and the occasional fundie/extreme right-wing drivel that makes my stomach churn. You will never imagine how little gets done and how long a day can drag on with people who drink constantly.

 

Mom's family: One set of cousins bringing whatever boyfriend/girlfriend/friend of the moment along WITHOUT ASKING OR EVEN CALLING AHEAD, and their mother (my aunt) who secretly hates me treating me like an idiot, while another, younger set of cousins get the sparkling-eye treatment from my grandparents who think they're the only people that matter just because they're the youngest, and thus are allowed to do whatever they damned well please in our house, also my spineless mother refusing to do anything to even protest her overbearing parents' feeding the dogs from the table (they're all already overweight), my cousins' using video games systems without permission, her sister (my aunt) being condescending towards me, etc. and my uncle staying way past the due date for over-loud conversation with my perenially irritating father.

 

Maybe if I could spend it with people I like, it could be different.

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Heh, I've found the company has a lot to do with any significant event.

 

I'm lucky enough to actually enjoy my family's company--in small doses. Much smaller if said company involves screaming/crying kids. Thankfully, most of my family members are understanding of my "shortcomings" and don't begrudge me when I retreat to my basement cave after a short time spent among them.

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Speaking of holidays starting early, the displays in the local stores in my area have been up since August. I mean, couldn't they at least wait until mid-September? :rolleyes:

 

And as for family, I have an annoying family too. I only go to family events to see my grandma anyway. She's 80 and won't be around forever.

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