Watch out! Batten down the hatches! The holidays are coming!
The shopping wars are about to erupt again!
The summer truce will end on Halloween, and the first shots of the new conflict will likely be fired shortly after Sunday, November 3, when Daylight Savings Time ends.
The Holiday Season (or as I call it the “the Puny Wars”) runs from late November to early January, but commercial skirmishes are likely to start in early November.
That’s when we will start being inundated by urgent messages urging us to get off the couch and head for a store. Any store, real or virtual.
The gist of these messages is simple: during the Holiday Season it is un-American to be a miser.
But first of all, what are we really celebrating?
Thanksgiving of course, and Christmas, two Christian holidays.
I almost forgot Hanukkah, a famed Jewish holiday having something to do with an oil shortage (undoubtedly generated by the oil cartel), if I recall.
Thanksgiving is a national American holiday commemorating the Plymouth Feast first celebrated by the Pilgrims and the Puritans in 1621.
It was originally meant to give thanks to God for a good harvest and a lot has been written about it.
But Thanksgiving has a long convoluted history that most Americans ignore (and which I will not bother to explain). For most people it is simply Turkey Day. The day when you absolutely, unreservedly MUST chomp on turkey!
Never mind the Pilgrims and their cockamamie stories!
On Thanksgiving you must go the store and buy that bird or FEAR EXCOMMUNICATION (shudder) from the American economy!
Thanksgiving by the way is gaining worldwide acceptance, and regardless where you live, it is now cool to observe this American holiday.
And then there is Christmas, one of the most celebrated (and most fabricated) Christian holidays.
Christmas marks supposedly the commemoration of the birth of Jesus Christ, but the exact month and day of his birth are really unknown.
Scholars believe that December 25 may have been chosen by the Catholic Church to correspond with the winter solstice and ancient polytheistic festivals that traditionally occurred at that time.
The Winter Solstice has always been an important event, observed by many people and cultures
It was notorious among the Greeks and Romans alike.
In ancient Rome the winter solstice was celebrated with a festival honoring Bacchus. It was held for a month and ended December 25.
During that period there was a lot of drinking and rather lewd behavior that the nascent Catholic Church didn’t appreciate.
Instead of rocking the boat and depriving its followers from having fun, the Church neatly appropriated the festival and rechristened it.
Stop venerating Bacchus, that drunken old lecher, and adore innocent Baby Jesus instead people were told.
One of the greatest sleight of hand in history.
But regardless of their origins, these holidays have been sanitized (scrubbed from most religious connotations) to appeal to a maximum of potential customers.
We don’t care who you are or what you believe… Come and celebrate with us… and incidentally, don’t forget to bring your wallet with you.
I don’t want to be a party-pooper, but at Christmas don’t feel obligated to spend a fortune to buy the affection of neighbors or relatives.
True love cannot be bought, and no amount of money will ever change that.
So, during the Puny Wars, be merry and party hearty but don’t let money be the overriding factor of that temporary insanity known as the Holiday Season.
Alain La Foudre