vixenmage: (icarus)
Slacktivist always makes me smile-- sometimes, looking back, I realize that parts of my childhood weren't weird at all. (And then there are the parts that really, really were.) Like apparently, not celebrating Christmas is a Done Thing. When I was... very young, maybe three or four, I remember going caroling with our pastor's family. And spending Christmas Eve or Day at our grandparents', seeing all the aunts and uncles and cousins and dogs. So many dogs-- my grandpa's big lab, my aunt's Labrador, my aunt's Newfoundland, my uncle's German Shepherd, and our own mutt, Jumper. Doesn't seem like so many in retrospect, but Nicky the Newfie was big enough for three dogs, and between them all, they filled my grandparents' little house up to bursting.

Anyway, about the time my youngest brother was born, maybe a little earlier, we stopped doing that. My mother became obsessed with the idea that Paganism was infiltrating all of America, and would talk about how the triangle of the Christmas tree was a symbol of the universe from Ancient Germany, which was the same symbol on the dollar bill-- also, see the star at the top. Heresy, I tells ya. And she disapproved of angels, mostly the way they were portrayed. They have no wings, she would say-- they were shining men, not chubby baby girls. Lights were gaudy, Santa was a devil, and the idea of giving gifts to each other to celebrate a Pagan holiday, even one that stood for Jesus' birth, was outrageous. After all, why give gifts to each other to celebrate holiness?

I always liked Easter better, anyway. Even as a kid, and more as an adult. (Holy crap, I'm an adult. Or will be before the month is out. That's weird.)

My father theorized that it had to do with Christmas being such a symbol of unhappiness in her childhood-- her parents were very rich, and her father was the type who really thought money could buy anything, a very selfish man. After it came out, years after my dad had won custody, that our mother's father could not be trusted around young girls, other things began to make sense. But my father told us, at some point, that he remembered her talking about how her father would spend all this money at Christmas, lavishing her with gifts and treats-- almost as if to make up for the fact that her life was hellish. It didn't surprise us, in retrospect, that she would hate to be reminded of that.

Anyway, working in retail will give you an enormous callous where all your seasonal goodwill used to be. My younger coworker was shocked at how cynical I seemed at the start of the season this year, but by the time January was getting started, he admitted he could see my reasons. So Christmas is sort of a bust for me. There are points of beauty-- I will never be unable to delight in winter, even under the most miserable weather, and being with family is almost always a joy-- but overall, it continues to feel like an excuse to Buy Things. And eat.

My friend Serra always said she'd rather receive random gifts at meaningless times of year, and I am inclined to agree-- they're more fun to give, too. There's nothing quite like sneaking up to your friend's house in the middle of the night to drop off the little thing you saw that reminded you of them.

At any rate, I have to get some stuff done today-- and there's something of a rant building up about this summer, and plans, and work, and how is it possible that I went from having seven days with Dann, two of which would be driving, to having five days, only three of which involve being in Acadia. And the worst part, of course, is that there's no one I can really be angry with, excepting possibly myself, because I really should have seen this coming.

...That wasn't the conclusion I intended. It doesn't seem to fit with the whole theme, y' know? Anyway. Christmas is nice, don't hate it for being Pagan. Pagans are nice, too. And I kinda doubt Jesus would care much that we got the date wrong, and giving gifts to each other quite frankly seems like the best way to honor His birth, really.


Apr. 24th, 2011 10:10 am
vixenmage: (it's a heron, most likely a great blue, from the shape.) (statue)
He is Risen!

There's a post about self, and religious epiphanies that bloody hurt, but today is not the day.

Here is a comic. A good comic.

And now, family.


vixenmage: St. Francis wiv a bird on 'is haid! (Default)

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