Happy 'So You Got Your Dog Neutered' Day!
Congratulations! Your Scab Fell Off!
Thank You For Spilling Grape Juice on my New Carpet!
Salutations on Your Divorce Day!
It's a conspiracy between the greeting card companies and the florists to see just how many holidays they can rook us into forking over our hard earned bucks to celebrate.
They've peppered us with so many occasions to commemorate that the holidays worth their salt have lost their flavor.
If there was money to be made, I imagine we'd be honoring tick season, heralded by the consumption of 'suc'culent foods, the giving of red gifts, and various activities related to digging in, latching on, and burrowing. It would be a good day for a blood drive!
For instance, what's with Grandparent's Day? Number one, they were recognized on their respective Father's/Mother's Day, and number two, surely the grandchildren always join in this celebration anyhow. They have "To my PopPop on Father's Day" cards. Why have set aside another day? For goodness sakes, they actually have "To my husband on Mother's Day" cards. Besides, do we have to JUST recognize our Dads ONE day a year? What's this all about?
Working at the post office, I hear so many grumbles about holidays when customers come to mail their gifts. I so often feel like saying to them, "Where is the feeling? If the holidays and birthdays are such a bother, don't bother." Actually I have other things I'd often like to say but I'd miss my paycheck. But, if you can't celebrate with the spirit of the occasion, you've lost the meaning behind them. I don't want a gift from you that gave you distress to give me. (Just send money, okay? Lots of it!)
Granted that the overwhelming abundance of such times gives one pause to stop and say, "Enough!", but this is where you have control. You don't HAVE to celebrate everything, nor do you have to keep up with the Jones's when you do.
I find that as we grow older and less in touch, it becomes harder to choose the perfect presents. After a while, we really do have everything within reason. Recently I realized that my husband would give his brother money for his birthday, and his brother, in turn, did the same. What's THIS all about? I suggested that they go out and eat someplace, attend a ballgame, a concert, or a movie. What they were doing meant nothing, and was forgotten. A memory would serve them better on the road ahead. Of course they agreed with me, sometimes I'm just so damn sensible and smart.
Christmas is probably the best example of the worst enjoyed holiday. First and foremost is the often buried meaning behind it, the birth of Jesus. That point needs no discourse, it's a given.
But, meaning aside, people get so caught up in the purchasing of gifts, the decoration a la Martha Stewart and the timetables they set for themselves, that it's no wonder this is the holiday that brings about the most violence and suicides. We forget that the planning and preparation for this holiday is part of the fun. The decorating is fun, the baking is fun, finding those perfect PJs adorned with Dilbert setting fire to a PC for Uncle Leland is FUN!
A shopper cannot choose a Halloween costume for their child without passing through the aisles of Christmas decorations already displayed. Santa seems to begin earlier and earlier each year. There's even a web site that begins counting down to the NEXT Christmas on Christmas Day!
Having a birthday in December has always been a real 'unday', as each year when she presents me with my presents, my mother announces, "Well, I can concentrate on Christmas now that I've gotten your birthday OUT OF THE WAY". I didn't mean to be a roadblock. Well, I do appreciate that nowadays she no longer wraps them in Christmas paper.
There was a year not too long ago that a group of us wanted to have a Christmas party, and with all the separate family gatherings, we realized it would be next to impossible. In March, I brought in a live tree and decorated it, I strung lights on the outside bushes, we brought gifts wrapped in Christmas paper and we had our party three months late. Sure, the neighbors then had their proof that I was fodder for the looney bin, but so what? We had FUN!
Calling the florist and ordering a huge impressive bouquet of flowers for an anniversary means "I didn't care enough to bother", especially punctuated by the equally insulting fact that the bill is mailed to be paid out of the household account. Often they are sent to the place of work merely to impress. Stopping on the side of the road and picking wildflowers full of ants and possible allergens, while maybe detrimental to your well being, says "I love you and I took the time and energy to show you"....ACHOOOO!
Holidays have too often become holler-daze. I'm never quite sure what to give someone for National Sponge Day, it's such an absorbing thought. I get the free willies on National Whale Day. Who has an INKling what to give for Tattoo Day? Everyone gets so bent out of shape on Pretzel Day...
Let's get back to the basics, birthday suits on birthdays...doesn't that sound like a heck of a lot more fun? Just be careful where you stick the candles!