The holiday season is fast approaching, and I seem to be much farther off my game this year than usual. I have yet to purchase my first Christmas gift, and while last minute shopping is not out of the ordinary for me, it is unusual that I would not have at this point at least started the process. I suppose I have held off this year due to the unlikely event that the world will indeed end with the Mayan calendar tomorrow. If the world ends we will have to return all of our holiday purchases, and the lines would be horrendous. What a pain.
So, with my general shopping incompetence combined with reticence regarding the cessation of life on earth, I find I must recycle (with slight modifications) last years holiday message. Looking it over, it seems that most of it still applies, plus, we all learned in school that recycling is good. Consider it a green initiative, designed to save and improve life on earth, that is if it were not ending tomorrow.
Originally published 12/23/2011:
As I have stated here before, and as people who know me will attest, I am NOT a person who subscribes easily to the notion of political correctness. So it is with no great simplicity that I attempt to wish you well within what has become a highly contentious topic.
Personally, I am a “Merry Christmas” kind of guy. I freely use that phrase with my friends and associates, and think that by far the vast majority of our country men and women respond positively to that term. I am equally consistent in the wishing of “Happy Hanukah” to my Jewish friends, although I have detected no great resentment from them if someone inadvertently wishes them a Merry Christmas.
To be truthful, I am also perfectly fine with the phrase “Happy Holidays”. I recognize that not everyone in the country celebrates Christmas, and people, particularly those in public settings, deal with those of all persuasions. “Happy Holidays” is an inoffensive phrase that now seems to be highly offensive for some. If you happen to be one of those people, take heart in this: The origin of the word holiday is derived from “Holy Day”, and evolved to specifically refer to old English (read: Christian) religious events.
Perhaps the phrase now draws such ire because of a broader attempt to neutralize Christmas as a significant holiday. On that front I would agree; there is some lunacy out there, but that is not the point or subject of this message.
Of course, a friend recently told me of a story he read about a group angry at the use of the “Happy Holidays” term, not because of its perceived slight toward Christmas, but rather because they did not celebrate ANY holiday, and they were offended that someone would wish them otherwise.
My point would be, I suppose, is that someone may wish me a Merry Christmas, or Happy Holidays, or Happy Hanukah, or Happy Kwanza; I don't care, and I take no offense. They are merely wishing me well. I take that at face value, and appreciate the intent with which the wish was given.
However, recognizing that not everyone lives in my world (happy place that it is), I have a solution that should fill the bill.
I wish each and every one of you a very Merry Happy Happy Chrishanukwanadan.
Chrishanukwanadan is an amalgam of Christmas, Hanukah, Kwanza and Ramadan, the four major celebratory events of the year from major cross sections of our population. Its origins are in our own company holiday parties, which have become known as the Annual Chrishanukwanadan office party.
Any Druids in my office are SOL.
All kidding aside, I wish everyone:
A Merry Christmas,
A Happy Hanukah,
Or a Happy Kwanza.
I hope the holiday season is filled with happiness and joy for all, and I wish you the greatest of success and happiness in the New Year.
And for those who are upset because they celebrate no holiday whatsoever, have a nice Tuesday.