Merry Freaking Christmas

I’ve been thinking the last week or two that I really need to write something here, but I just haven’t had anything to say.  Then I got to thinking back to my days as an editor of our high school newspaper, when I loved writing snarky editorials, bitching about this thing or that thing that I just absolutely couldn’t stand.  I thought I was being funny, and a few people kept encouraging me, so I kept doing it.  There were probably more people that thought I was a self-righteous wanker, but screw them.  If you’re one of those people that can’t stand a good, hard-core, get-things-off-your-chest-that-have-been-grating-on-you-for-years rant, then I invite you to stop reading now.  Otherwise, let the bitching begin.

Can I just say that I hate Christmas?  It’s true.  I really don’t like Christmas.  Hopefully nobody is gasping right now, because those people should have stopped reading during the last paragraph.  But there are probably a few thrill-seekers out there who kept reading anyway, in spite of the warning, who are now spluttering, “who doesn’t like Christmas?  What are you, a communist?  What about the cute little baby Jesus in the manger and all the joyous children opening presents and the sugarplums?”  If that’s you, seriously, stop reading.

Now, the idea of Christmas I don’t find too terrible.  One day a year we celebrate the birth of Jesus and give presents to our loved ones.  That’s not a bad concept, even though Jesus was actually born in the spring and we only celebrate in December because the early Christians were trying to unpaganize themselves.  Still, not a bad deal.  But where has Christmas gone from there?  It has somehow morphed from a small, yet meaningful holiday into a gigantic gluttonous orgy of commercialism and waste, known as ‘The Christmas Season.’  Let’s walk through some of the things the ‘Christmas Season’ means to me.

First of all there is Santa Claus.  We tell our children that there is a magical being that lives in a remote, unreachable place that somehow can see all our actions, judge us, reward our good deeds with gifts and punish our bad deeds.  Eventually our children catch on that we were blowing smoke all this time, which may or may not come in a very traumatic way, but the real problem I have is this: while we are deliberately lying to our children during their highly formative years about Santa Claus, we are also teaching them about God, another magical being that lives in a remote, unreachable place that somehow can see all our actions, judge us, reward our good deeds with gifts and punish our bad deeds.  “But this one really does exist, not like that other one we made up.”  No wonder we have so many psychiatrists, not to mention liquor stores.

Next, there’s the presents.  I think giving gifts is a good idea, but come on.  Do we really need to rack up a mountain of credit card debt just to meet the expectations that advertising agencies have drilled into our 2-year olds?  Do we really need to buy old college roommates gifts, just because we feel guilty that they bought us a gift and we couldn’t possibly not return the favor with something of equal or greater value, lest we appear chintzy?  I’m hoping for a large Christmas bonus this year, not so I can buy anything special for my family, but just to float the bills I’ve already incurred.  I know I’m a tightfisted bastard, but it just seems like too much to me.

Now the thing I really can’t stand: Decorations.  What a waste of time and money!  Every year, earlier and earlier, we lug down the boxes and boxes of decorations from the attic, spend countless hours setting everything up, all the while listening to our Kenny G or Celine Dion Christmas CDs that are too awful to stomach the rest of the year.  Then we get to climb up on roofs and into trees to set up the thousands of Christmas lights, hoping we don’t fall and kill ourselves, just to watch our electricity meters start marching double-time to Mannheim Steamroller’s ‘Do You Hear What I Hear?’  This is assuming we’re not one of those rich jerks with a big enough yard and pocket book to actually hire a professional company to do all this decorating for us.  If only my Christmas bonus was big enough to afford some real holiday cheer!

I assume nobody is left reading this post by now, except maybe my wife, who knows me better than anyone but probably still can’t believe what a jerk she married.  Hi, honey.  If anybody else is still reading, thanks for letting me get out my old-school, crazy rant, and I wish you all a Merry Freaking Christmas!

3 Responses

  1. Seriously, you are such a whiny little girl! First of all, where are our Christmas lights? Did I make you decorate one freaking thing this year, no, even though I am 9 months pregnant and have we gone over our predetermined budget by a penny? NO! We don’t even own a credit card so quit your bitchin’ and buck up cowboy! I love you and hello to you too!
    Love your Christmas loving wife!

  2. I don’t “hate” Christmas, but I absolutely agree with 98% of your sentiment.
    And, your editorials are 1 of 5 things I miss about SHS.
    Merry Freaking Christmas to you too! 🙂

    So no baby yet?

  3. This posting just proves to everyone that you are a bastard-coated bastard with bastard filling. Christmas hater! 😛

    But in spite of all that, the Christmas season is an exceedingly annoying time of year. Once you give up on the idea of exchanging gifts with people that mean nothing to you, you can just focus on treating the people you love a little better. Focus on the best and the hell with the rest. (I just made that up… pretty neato, huh?)

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