Notes on Christmasby Roger Young / 24.12.2009
Spoiler Alert: By the end of this piece I get all huggy and Christmassy.
It’s the Christmas holidays, a time when we should all be with family and friends reflecting on the past year, and for some reason you are online. We’re flattered but really we don’t need the hit count that badly. Seriously, go and celebrate the Christmas spirit with your family.
Now look, I know that a fair percentage of our readers are not Christians (Yeah, those new Facebook privacy settings aren’t so private) but that’s no reason not to celebrate. Find a Christian, wish them well and thank them for appropriating this pagan holiday. It’s just a little weird that, here in the Southern Hemisphere, we celebrate the end of the work year in the middle of the year. In the Northern Hemisphere the pagans celebrated this time of year because it meant the days were going to stop getting shorter and start getting longer. Here on the other side of the globe we celebrate the coming darkness, every year. No wonder we’re cynics. But this is not the subject of this merry missive.
I used to love Christmas. It was a time of presents and family, of hatchets buried (though not so deep that you couldn’t feel something under the surface), a time when you saw how much your cousins had grown in a year and how much your aunts had aged. It was a time of reflection, reflection on my family’s declining financial means as the presents became slowly more meager and my father passed out progressively earlier, every year. But the one thing I remember about the Christmas’s of my childhood was the togetherness and if there is anything I can get behind, it’s togetherness. And we don’t have enough of it, that and tolerance. So all I ask is that for the next coupla days we bash no god-botherers for stealing Christmas and giving it to a Coca Cola mascot. And that the deity-botherers acquiesce temporarily that their belief system isn’t the reason everyone’s taking the time off. And we spend time together revelling in our common joys and celebrating all the things that makes us unique. For, whatever the reason, the world has ground to a snails pace and that makes it the ideal time for you to go and listen to your uncle from out of town tipsily pontificate on something he read somewhere once. And if you have no family where you are, no friends, it’s probably because you spend way too much time on the internet, so yeah, log off and go wish someone a happy birthday of the unconquered Sun, even though in practice, for us, it’s the opposite.