There’s something about christmas that makes me really really sad.
But that’s not what this blog post is about.
This is more to explain that I only really like the commercialization of the holiday season. And also talk about some of the things I got. Let’s start with number one, because it’s a little less self indulgent.
When I first started informing people that I couldn’t really give less of a shit about the traditional elements of the holiday, I was met with frequent accusations of being “Grinch-y”. In a loose sense of Dr. Seuss’ creation, I guess that’s true. An optimal situation would feature me breaking into every house on the planet and stealing everything save the gifts and the food. I really don’t like christmas trees, or stockings, or wreaths, or any of the other symbols that we typically associate with the festive season. But I am a fan of presents. Less the receiving presents, and more the act of purchasing presents for people. Those who are familiar with me know that I am a fan of buying things in general, and the holiday season gives me an excuse to buy a bunch of things. Something different happens, though, when you’re buying gifts for other people.
And I don’t mean different in the sense of “it’s the thought that counts”. Not entirely, anyway. It’s more the fact that it gives me some sort of odd peek into the life of the person that I’m buying for. For a brief glimpse, I can see their likes, dislikes, tastes and interests like they do; not as simple things that they do for themselves, but the reasons they do them. That’s what informs a good gift decision, I think. Not just thinking about whether or not a person needs something, but also thinking about why they’d want it at all. What they’d do with it. What this gift looks like six months down the road. Other than the free meal (and a rather large meal at that), that’s probably the only part of the holiday season I look forward to. Because other than when I’m actually buying the presents, or eating the meal, I just feel very very tired of it all. I won’t go to the extreme some people do and say that Christmas music makes me want to break things, but it certainly unsettles me. So does hearing people talk about wintery activities like skating and tobogganing. I find both these things enjoyable, but something about the way people tie them back to christmas…irks me.
Maybe it’s less that I only like the commercialization (and by commercialization I mean buying things) of christmas, and more that it helps me channel the only part of christmas I truly enjoy still. Hmm.
I bought my seven year old sister an iPod touch today and she was fucking thrilled about it. My brother (older than her but still nine years younger than me) was given a smartphone. The youngest two got toys. Everyone loved their gifts. I love that feeling. I loved buying the things for them, because I like looking at things to buy. Outside of the season of giving, what a fucked up way to view Christmas that is.
Most of my christmas involved house-related gifts for my new apartment. Kitchen knives, new pots, jelly beans, IKEA gift cards, all that stuff. I also got a 12 year old bottle of Macallan (scotch). That made me pretty happy.
Merry Christmas. Tomorrow is Boxing Day, and normally that’s my favourite day of the season.