Enjoying life, off the hamster wheel
Tonight I went shopping. And one of my stops included Canadian Tire. So there I am, walking toward the door, where a rosy cheeked, warmly dressed Salvation Army guy is standing with his donation bucket, ringing bells. It’s the sound of Christmas, I love it, and I dug into my change purse and pulled out the few coins I had on me, releasing an errant moth or two. “Thank you,” he said. And then he continued, “does the ringing annoy you?” Huh? I looked at him like he was an alien. “Huh?” I said. “No….why?”
Well, it turns out that someone at Lougheed Mall had told the Salvation Army to stop ringing their bells because they’re annoying shoppers getting ready for Christmas! I kid you not! Salvation Army has also issued a memo to its volunteers to NOT say “Merry Christmas” because too many people have complained about the word “merry”. Yes MERRY! As in Ho Ho Ho!!! Not the word “Christmas”, as in the holiday with religious overtones, but “merry” because people feel Christmas is getting too commercial and they’re spending too much money and going into debt, which doesn’t feel merry! Can you believe it?!? I thought my head was going to explode! I mean, okay, first the city of Richmond bans the word Christmas from all its public places, or anything that can be seen by the public: store fronts, malls, any signs anywhere. No “Christmas”… it’s too offensive to other religions! And now this! Will the insanity ever end?
Seriously, why else would we run around and buy presents to give to a bunch of people for that one “special” night or day every year, cook and bake until we pass out, eat until we’re numb and feel guilty for the next couple of weeks until we’ve forgotten our New Year’s resolutions? And if you don’t want to spend so much money and get sucked into the commercialism, THEN DON’T! But, come on! Leave the Salvation Army alone. Yes, they are a Christian organization, who HAPPEN to do some really good work. Unlike Big Brothers, or that second-hand store that everyone goes goo-goo over, Value Village, the Salvation Army is a non-profit organization that actually HELPS the homeless. Value Village is there to turn a profit and give the rest to charity.So, the next time you see a Salvation Army person at the mall or in front of a department store, smile, say MERRY CHRISTMAS and donate. It’s once a year. Take your frustrations out on someone who actually might deserve it, like Steven Harper. Oh, and if you’re feeling tapped out financially, grab ahold of yourself and reign yourself in.
Celebrate in the spirit of Christmas, yes CHRISTMAS, or if your Jewish, Hanukkah, or if there’s some other religious festival happening now, oh, I don’t know, Kwanzaa or something, then celebrate in the spirit of those festivals. To give is more than to produce a physical item cleverly wrapped a la Martha Stewart in some kind of festive package. There are many other ways to give. Be creative and give of yourself. And celebrate the season, not your bank account (or lack thereof).
Bah humbug and Merry Christmas!
Jingling around the puddle, jumping.