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Soapbox – Looking A Lot Like Christmas

I’ve always loved the holidays. It’s the one time (or even just one day) of the year when things seem to actually slow down and people take a minute to spend some time with family and friends. Even if you don’t celebrate a traditional Christmas, it’s easy to get caught up in the fun and excitement of the season.

When I had kids, Christmas was reborn in me through their eyes. The magic, the joy, the anticipation, it all came back to me in a way that I had a never really considered before, because when you think about it, this time of year with all its pageantry and vibrancy is, above all else, for the kids.

So what’s this got to do with “Soapboxing?” Well, here’s where I had some coal shoved in my stocking.

We live in a society that is way more interested in being “clever” and “snarky” than anything else. I see more and more people crapping on things just for the sake of crapping on them. People sharing allegedly witty memes, carefully crafted tweets or posts all designed to do one thing: make the poster look cool and edgy, and shit on some aspect of life that, frankly, is just meant to be enjoyed.

Lately, I’ve noticed a lot of these kinds of things being shared and posted that have a theme of “Christmas coming too early.” Lots of pictures of closed attics and sheds with captions that say something along the lines of “Everyone’s sharing pictures of their Christmas trees, here’s mine. Because it’s November!”

Wow. You really hit one out of the park there, ace.

I put up my tree and decorations in November. I wait, out of respect until after November 11th, but after that, it’s fair game. I do this for two reasons; 1) my kids love it, and it’s always a really fun family event to put up the tree, and 2) I don’t feel like standing in a blizzard (or freezing rain where we live) stringing lights in December because it’s now been decided by some unseen committee that it’s “OK” to put them up.

I’m not usually one to say people should or shouldn’t share whatever they want. Truth is, I really don’t care what you do, I cannot stress that enough. But when you do it only for the purpose of establishing some kind of superiority and taking away some of the joy in my, or anyone else’s life, I get upset. Why can’t I get excited about a happy time of year? Why is it wrong that I’m eager to celebrate something instead of languishing in the misery the world throws at us every day?

You don’t want to celebrate Christmas until a certain predetermined date? Fine, that’s your prerogative. But don’t try to act cooler than those that want to get the maximum amount of happiness out of the season. How about simply not saying anything? How about you do your thing and let me do mine, and we call it even?

Now there’s a present we can all enjoy. Merry Christmas.

The Gift of Giving

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