Thursday, December 23, 2004

"It's the time of the season..."

"...for loving." While that has nothing to do with the topic of this post, it came to mind.

I like winter. I'm not such a huge fan of "the holiday season." Why? Well for one, I'm Jewish. That is, I don't celebrate Christmas. Never have. So "everyone" getting in a tense uproar about the upcoming long weekend and Christmas shopping and the like means absolutely nothing to me (other than possibly the long weekend). In addition, though I often don't mind Christmas songs, they do tend to grate on me after a while. As does the impression that I dare not set foot within a few miles of any mall since they are bound to be overwhelmed and utterly obnoxious. It all combines into one mishmash of loathing. I don't get togther with relatives. I don't sit around a Christmas tree opening presents. I don't enjoy a huge, family-based Christmas dinner. I don't roast chestnuts by the warmth of an open fire. I also don't resent any of that but if that's what the holiday season means to the majority of Chirstmas-observers, understand that it means absolutely none of that to me.

Channukah (my preferred spelling) was always a fun time at home. Since the time I went to college, though, it's become less-observed as finals tend to inevitable run into the observance/celebration, meaning I almost never observe or celebrate it. Again, I don't resent that, it just translates to the month of December holding less meaning for me other than the end of the semester.

Likewise for New Years. Like Valentine's Day, I can't think of a single New Years in which I actually and thoroughly celebrated and enjoyed the holiday. Very few of them have I drunk much if at all. Very few of them have I spent in the company of people other than family members. Very few of them have I actually enjoyed. The vast majority of the time, it's been something like "okay, yay, it's the next year. I saw the ball drop, guess I can go to sleep sometime in the next hour or so." Seriously. Hell, one of the few I remember is the one from 2001 --> 2002 and that's because I spent it playing Dark Age of Camelot (an MMORPG) on my computer! And the reason I remember it is because a box popped up wishing me a happy New Year from the game operators! If that's my most memorable New Years, you can tell I haven't truly been celebrating them.

Yes, I know I could probably really celebrate New Years if I wanted to. Go out and find a party, have a party, hit a bar, do something. But I've never truly felt the push to do so. Bars generally aren't my scene as I'd prefer being with friends and people I know. And then, most of them have their own plans for New Years that generally don't include me. To quote Calvin & Hobbes: "It's a vicious cycle that took years to perfect."

All of the above is also not to say that I get depressed or down-trodden this time of year. I don't. It's nice to have a festive atmosphere on the air and people generally happy and/or content for a while. Both are rare occasions and I appreciate the generally positive sensation that overrides most things. It's nice. It's also infectious. And that's probably why I don't get depressed or despondent. I mean it's Christmas time and New Years and all that. How could anyone get too upset? (Especially since the semester is over and we have at least 3 weeks until the next begins.)

So in this festive time and merry atmosphere..

I wish everyone a very merry and happy holidays!