Tuesday, October 27, 2009
The Season of Holidays
So it's Tuesday. Almost the end of October. Pretty soon we will have another Halloween behind us and will have successfully paid no serious heed to a previously important and grand celebration of some of our forebears. (Another odd word - forebear. Like a child's story with a twist)
So we enter the season of many holidays. Most coming up have some sort of historical connecting rod to some religious madness from years ago. Recently ( I say recently in the sense that this has happened since I have been alive), Uh recently we have added Kwanzaa to this all star line up coming at us. Let's break it down.
Halloween - first celebrated by white folks barely past grunting stage. As I understand it, we can blame the Irish. Or the Brits. And even the Scots, my forebears, got their pasty white sheets and blackened faces into it. For some reason the end of summer was a bigger deal then than it is now. I guess headin to Florida was not an option for them. Bermuda shorts and winged sunglasses had yet to be invented.
Thanksgiving - I know the official line on this one. I studied it in school. But I think it is all propaganda from The Man. Thanksgiving is nothing but a chance for members of the same family to get together and bicker with themselves in private instead of doing it in public. That and watching football. I always thought it was odd to only have one day we were supposed to be thankful. Like the rest of the year it was okay to take it all for granted?
Chanukah - Not being Jewish, this one always confused me. I never understood why they did not celebrate Christmas. Of course it all became obvious once I realized everyone was not a Christian. It was my first and only Jewish girlfriend who straightened me out on this one. I was maybe 13 and she was a more sophisticated 14. Instead of celebrating a birth of someone important, I guess this one is based on winning some war or battle back around the beginning of time. Once I caught onto the fact they had eight days of this, I thought I was getting cheated what with our paltry one day.
Kwanzaa - Not sure what to say about this one. Being a blatantly pasty white guy, I must be cautious here. Apparently it has grown legs since it was invented in 1966. More power to the folks who celebrate it. More money in the till for the businesses that cater to it. Win/win all around.
And the grande dame of them all, Christmas. What is there to say about Christmas that has not already been said? My mother and many other wise old folks always said, "If you cannot say something nice, don't say anything at all." Riiiiight. Sure Mom. I hear ya.
I am sure I have snubbed someones Fall getaway. For this I do apologize. These are the holidays that seem to have captured the lion's share of attention and scrutiny at this time of the year. The attention paid to them has transcended their original intents and become vehicles for the business world to finish the year with as much of our money in their pockets as possible. Yeah I know, I am one of those business folks. That does not mean I have to play stupid.
I learned to hate this time of year. My family did not handle it well. My father's intake of alcohol would increase exponentially as we got closer to the end of the year. The volume of the heated arguments between my mom and my dad would pick up. I remember staying in my room more or staying away from the house as long as possible. My reading picked up this time of year. Libraries wherever we lived would see my face more often. And rather than allow this built in depression get it's grips on me one more time, I figured I would spill my guts now and get it over with. We'll see how it works.
Keep it 'Tween the Ditches..........................
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