Happy Holidays!

No, really. Happy Holidays. And maybe even Merry Christmas, but when I say it I really mean, Merry Time of Santa Claus, Good Cheer and Delicious Apple Cider.

I’ve seen this blog post circulated around facebook for a few weeks, but it keeps sticking in my head. And since it keeps coming back AND I was just at the mall last night…

The only one who can take your Christ out of your Christmas is you.
How do you take Christ out of Christmas? You take Christ out of Christmas every time you:
Don’t take the high road.
Are less than loving, and patient, and kind.
Gossip, complain about, and judge others.
Are slow to listen and quick to anger.

Yeah. That. Actually, a lot of what she says. Including:

There are actual problems in the world, and whether someone says “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Holidays” is not one of them.

Now, for me–and contrary to the author of the original–I do feel like the overall message of Jesus– kindness and goodwill to all mankind– is not fully represented in the celebration of his birth (not in December, BTW. The significance of Dec. 25th relates to the Roman celebration for the rebirth of the sun god, Saturn.) I mean, one of the most memorable times of JC loosing his cool is with the vendors selling schwag at his temple. Methinks he’d prefer his birthday to be a little less flashy… but I’m totally just guessing.

Even with all that, I’m not suggesting that gifts shouldn’t be purchased, or even that I don’t struggle with getting caught up in the holiday hoopla of extreme excess (people, retail stores theme the tempo of their music to make you buy more. Make a playlist and take some ear buds. Save yourself.) But the sheer mass consumption this time of year? Overlaid by the parallel conversations about the reason for the season? Yeah, the dissonance strikes me deep in my sarcastic heart. Right in the place where irony lives.

I try to stay out of walmart/target/toy-r-us for the same reason I avoid buffet-style restaurants– piss poor impulse control. Bright lights– preferably blinking in beat to the overhead musack; BOGO deals? The only medications that could suppress my ADHD in the face of that sort of visually stimulating retail porn is an Ambien. And I have to be the one who shops, because I’m the one who stores the color/character/tagless shirt preferences that are the MOST IMPORTANT THING EVER to a Small Person.

So if you see me out there in the world, with my ear buds rocking 90s hip-hop, and my mouth chomping on gum… don’t distract me by saying hello, m’kay?