A Curmudgeon on Christmas!

A Curmudgeon on Christmas!

I hate Christmas. The mall is full of nothing but women and children. All you hear is, ‘I want this,’ ‘Get me this,’ ‘I have to have this’… and then there’s the children. And they’re all by my store ’cause they stuck the mall Santa right outside ringing his stupid bell. As if you need a bell to notice a 300-pound alcoholic in a red suit. ‘Ho, ho, ho,’ all day long. So, nice as can be, I go outside, and ask him to shut the hell up. He takes a swing at me. So, I lay a hook into his fat belly and he goes down. Beard comes off, all the kids start crying and I’m the bad guy.

– Al Bundy, Married With Children


That has got to be the best bleepin’ Christmas quote ever!

Religious holiday my ass! The only real Christmas miracle is that curmudgeons everywhere don’t rise up and embark upon the kind anti-yuletide revolution that would have extroverts barricading themselves into their homes along the lines ‘The Walking Dead.’ Well…that, and the fact that my alcoholic family refuses to have anything to do with me, which may well be a real Festivus miracle.

It starts with Black Friday where white folks storm retail establishments at 2 a.m. only to get into fistfights that make ‘The Purge’ look tame. And it’s all in an effort to secure the latest must-have toy, which their overly-spoiled progeny will discard or destroy in less than a week.

And that’s the best part!

With no time to catch your breath, it’s on to Fox News’ “War on Christmas” affront du jour, which typically involves whatever is or isn’t on a Starbucks’ cup. I don’t know about you, but all I care about is whether I miss that overly small cardboard ring which means searing at least four fingertips clean off.

It’s not that I have a problem with someone wishing me a happy Hanukah, happy Kwanzaa, merry Christmas, whatever Muslims celebrate, or, god forbid, happy holidays. It’s the implied requirement to be jolly or merry that bothers me.

What if I’m perfectly happy being unhappy? Ebenezer Scrooge was really on to something.

Trust me! I’m just fine indulging in that curmudgeonly disdain for anything artificial, commercial, religious, or simply annoying, thank you very much! And Christmas is the holiday that meets all those criteria and more! Anything that brings the rabble out in public en masse can’t possibly be a good thing.


All these insipid winter solstice celebrations are just that – artificial. Not ones to be bound by convention, those newfangled religious leaders concocted the current holidays to compete with those nature-worshipping and fun-loving pagan celebrations. And the further down the religious road you go, the wackier those holidays become.

Speaking of “wacky,” I wonder how Scientologists celebrate the season? Festive and fanciful hand drawn pictures of Xenu? On second thought, don’t tell me! I’m sure it would be far too depressing.

Perhaps if we revived the whole fertility festival thing, I might not be so cranky.

And just when you think you’ve recovered from those absurdly macabre Halloween displays, you’re completely blinded by the 1.2 billion candlepower cornea searing dioramas your overly competitive neighbors insist upon erecting just to prove they love the baby Jesus, Rudolph and Frosty more than you do!

Has any American anywhere ever considered the possibility that less is really more? Don’t answer that question because it would be far too depressing.

And just when you think it can’t get any worse, it’s time to spend “quality” time with your family. What could possibly go wrong with that, particularly when alcohol is involved? SNL’s ‘drunk uncle’ bit doesn’t come close to any actual Christmas reality. Where’s the four-letter epithets, the requisite recriminations, and all the passing out?

The only thing worse than that terrifying scenario is having to fly somewhere to endure your “loved ones.” Talk about adding insult to injury. That kind of grim determination requires a sadomasochistic streak along the lines of serving as Donald Trump’s Chief-of-Staff.

I would rather be catapulted 1,200 miles through the upper reaches of atmosphere in the hope of landing on a stack of twin-size mattresses than to have to contend with another airport, get on another plane, and endure those surly sky waitresses. And I mean the male variety, too!

It takes a concerted effort to make flying that kind of miserable, but they’re more than up to it. Personally, I’d rather take my chances with the terrorists. By the way, has the TSA managed to catch just one?

Even if you don’t go anywhere, you’re not nearly off the hook. What on God’s green earth gave generally semi-rational human beings the notion that anyone would want a gaggle of their neighbors showing up unannounced at their front door to sing the same sad Christmas songs we’ve been hearing at Target since early July?

Neighbors tend to be enough of a nuisance already. And if I wanted to have to suffer through random people poorly singing, I’d invite the Osmonds over for Christmas dinner. Do Mormons celebrate Christmas? And if they do, do they have to visit all their wives?

Then the fruitcakes start arriving with happy notes! Where were they when I needed those denser-than-a-neutron-star horrors to use as projectiles which would send those errant carolers scattering into various backyards where they’d be forced to cower for days.

They won’t ring my damn doorbell during dinnertime again, will they!

And it’s not nearly over, either!

The next sign of the imminent yuletide apocalypse is when the Christmas missives start infesting your mailbox. If I haven’t made that less than minimal effort to contact you through Facebook before December, what makes you think I want to hear from you now? And what makes you think I’m the least bit interested in you or your family’s eminently mundane lives?

Finally, despite having developed a full-blown retail- store-ophobia, it’s time to trudge back to the mall to return all the stupid shit your friends and family bought you because they put no thought into it whatsoever.

Thank you so much for that Donald Trump Chia Pet; I can’t tell you how thrilled I am with the $15 donation to the Society for Homeless Skunks in my name; and I don’t know how I ever got by without an electric spatula.

Oh! And engraving it so I couldn’t return it was a nice touch, too.

And this year, I’ve given up booze! Please pray for me!


3 thoughts on “A Curmudgeon on Christmas!

  1. If you really want to get curmudgeonly about Christmas, contemplate the Hallmark Channel. I’m not saying watch it. That would be a form of torture. But just consider these statistics, reported in the New Yorker:

    –They produced just over 100 movies last year. Of those, forty were about Christmas.

    –Starting in late October, THC broadcasts Christmas movies nonstop.

    –This programming lineup, called Countdown to Christmas, racks up 72 million viewers.

    –Lifetime, Netflix, Ion and other cable channels have started doing the same thing. (Lifetime’s programming bloc is called It’s a Wonderful Lifetime. Get it?)

    You just can’t escape, Jeff. It’s everywhere. We now live in the age of Big Treacle.

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