I can’t believe it. 8 days till one of my favorite holidays, and I’m already fed up with it. I love the parties. The dinners. Hanging out with my family and friends. The opportunity to ditch the office life for a week. Head home. Relax… etc. You know, those sentimental comforts as we usher out one year and ring in another.
8 days, and the commercial excesses of the holiday have killed it. Part of it is the dastardly trick of trying to figure out what to buy family members who refuse to make even a simple request for a gift, purchased or otherwise. This year hardly feels like a success, as of yet, on that front.
Christmas was drilled in early. Everywhere you turned. At least in the commercial district. Buy Yourself a Merry Little Christmas… as soon as possible! Perhaps part of the detachment this year springs from a dour personal level, and that ominous national and international level. Things just don’t seem like they’re getting done. Expectations not met. No time for anything. It’s never a good way to reflect on the year. Never a good way to leave off. So, maybe it’s not surprising that the neighborhood doesn’t feel very festive. That hardly anyone around our house has decorated yet. Has seemed all that cheerful (I’m not even asking for Capra styled cheerfulness, either). A buyer’s holiday was shoved down everyone’s throat. More than normal this year. That’s a certain way to kill anyone’s spirits.
We were at a party last week hosted at the department where Compton and I graduated from. The other AC was there, too, and a conversation with my old mentor… which had regretfully drifted into awkward silence, was interrupted by two girls in a debate. One was Jewish. She looked like Ileana Douglas. The other, a taller, spunkier girl, claimed that Chaunuka was not a Biblical holiday. I was about to add to this… Christmas isn’t either. This has long been one holiday in dire need of serious stripping down to core essentials. And not even religious ones.
Maybe it’s not just me. People just seem unnecessarily worn out. But I’m sure I’ll find my own festive spirit waiting for me, once Christmas Eve rolls around. When Grandma’s stirring about in the kitchen flaring up a tempting aroma of fine food. When I’m hanging out with my family with not a worry about deadlines or schedules. When there’s not a need to set foot in a store, or look at a watch. And there’s not a single thought about what I’m going to unwrap on Christmas day.