So, I came across this on Facebook recently, shared by one of my friends.
And, in the true spirit of the holidays, it really made me want to find the original poster and those who shared it and give them a huge “BAH HUMBUG!”
I know it will come as huge shock to those who know me, but I am one of those people who does not particularly care for this, the least wonderful time of the year. A too-busy schedule of social obligations that feel exactly like obligations. Commercials, billboards and storefronts constantly reminding all that if you’re not giving or getting a Lexus with a big red bow in the driveway and/or something jewel-encrusted for Christmas, well, then – you’re not really a very good person and no one will ever love you, because, as we all know, “expensive gifts = love.” The end of another year, a stark reminder of the inexorable march to the grave and the sad refrain of “is that all there is?” Having to listen, yet again, to the worst Christmas song of all time, bar none, “Wonderful Christmas Time” by Paul McCartney. Mindlessly stuffing one’s face with the surfeit of Harry & David Moose Munch and cheese logs delivered to the office.
So, yes – not my favorite time of year. But I certainly realize that many folks, such as those described in the Facebook post, are having a much less happy holiday than I. And, having been unceremoniously dumped (does anyone ever get ceremoniously dumped – maybe royalty? “We, your sovereign and significant other do declare that we shan’t live with you anymore and have filled our royal coach with our half of the royal CD collection and that plant that I brought to the relationship. I shall depart presently for the Royal Efficiency Apartment behind the strip mall adjacent to the Winter Palace.” But I digress…) on the Sunday before Thanksgiving three years ago, I have a bit of experience with extraordinarily shitty holidays. I can therefore tell you with absolute assurance that copying and pasting a mindless bit of drivel about “caring thoughts and loving prayers” and “moral support” to your Facebook timeline will do not one whit to ameliorate the suffering of another person.
If you are, in fact, genuinely concerned about someone you know who’s lonely this holiday, call them up! Take them to a movie! Show up at their house on Christmas morning with a large bottle of bourbon and a stack of non-holiday-themed DVDs! Bring them a casserole! Worried about someone in poor health or coping with the illness of a family member? Clean their bathroom! Do a couple of loads of their laundry! Walk their dog! Bring them a casserole! Your jobless friend? Invite them for dinner – on you! Slip a C-note into their Christmas Card! Get ‘em a Safeway gift card! Bring them a casserole!
But don’t post ridiculous b.s. on Facebook and then pat yourself on the back for being so thoughtful. Because, in addition to being useless and smacking of self-congratulatory smugness, it really brings out the worst in Grinch-types such as myself – who will then be forced to blog disparagingly about your annoying FB post.
So, happy holidays! And just fucking bring those casseroles.