Making a list, checking it twice

Some people excitedly count down the days until Christmas. You know the type – those that, starting the day after Thanksgiving, remind you of how many days are left until the “big day.”

It seems to me that’s just a nice, couth way of like saying “I just can’t wait for people to give me shit I don’t really need or deserve.” Honestly, we’ve made Christmas is nothing more than a sales pitch. It’s a way for Hallmark and Belk and Wal-Mart to increase their profits by guilting you into purchasing stupid junk for everyone you know. And if you don’t, you’re a bad person – at least that’s what they want you to believe. Said “countdowners” serve only to reinforce these things.

Not that I’m against the holiday. Far from it. I love spending time with my family. We do the whole presents thing, but I think we’ve got to the point where it doesn’t matter how big or small everything is. I know saying “it’s the thought that counts” is pretty lame, but its true. My family isn’t rich. We’re rather working class folks. It’s stupid to expect some big extravaganza. But I tell ya, there’s nothing like Granny Janie’s breakfast Christmas morning, hanging around the tree with the family watching whatever the youngsters can agree upon. (In the past, it’s been “The Christmas Story,” which is usually in the middle of its 24-hour rotation in TBS. However, my cousin Hunter, being 5, is a much bigger fan of the cartoons.) That time, to me, is worth more than any present in the world.

Hell, I’ve gotten to the point where I would much rather give out presents. It’s a pain trying to think of anything other than a shitload of random DVDs to ask for. I’m a grown man – anything I really want, I usually get myself. It’s nice letting people do things for you if they insist upon it, but I’ve stopped expecting it a long time ago.

I don’t know. I’ve been called a grinch, though I argue I’m a realist. We’re supposedly celebrating the birth of a man whose destiny was to sacrifice himself for our alleged sins. The magi brought gifts to the child, I get it. But they gave what they had to give. They didn’t trample people to death in a Wal-Mart just to get the last Wii. I like their method much, much better.

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~ by J on December 9, 2008.

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