" Merry Christmas "

- said the Buddhist to the Atheist.

No, this is not a lame bar-room joke, this is actual documentary.
Yesterday as I was having a chat with my lovely and trusty local printer, she wished me a Merry Christmas as I was leaving.
And out of pure reflex, I wished her one too.
It was only seconds later that I realised how slightly absurd this was and yet more seconds later that it would be churlish, nay perverse to not ignore socio-politico-religious qualms and simply join in the general festive cheeriness that's swept over just about every shopkeeper in my local area.

The thing is -and this is installment #3 in the ongoing Further Fascinating Factoids- I don't really do Christmas. (Or Chrimbo as a friend of mine calls it, does anyone else? I like it for its silly and secular appeal).

Not in a Bah-Humbug-Scrooge kinda way. No, it's more that I am atheist, not particularly close to my family, the commercialism of it (which I hate). But mostly because I have strong and buried negative associations around it; a close relative of mine having a psychotic episode usually on or around the day, which was our family tradition.
Yes, some people do turkey, some people go very wrong in the mind tank.
Diversity is what it's all about.

But I did want to do a post about Christmas, not least because I know a lot of people genuinely love it and also because it would give me a good excuse to share with you my yarn-ey Xmas tree. Working up the front body of Pengy, the tapered panel of stocking stitch just zipped into a conical shape and did somewhat resemble a tree

et voila!

* in the window of a local eco-paint shop. Regular readers will know how much I do love a good paint swatch!


Blogger Michele said...

this is my favorite Christmas blog post!

Carson, thanks for all the enriching you've done in my life this year.

wishing you a happy time whatever you call it and however you do or don't celebrate it.

21 December 2007 at 11:13 am  
Blogger Rose Red said...

Love the paint swatch tree.

I don't go ga-ga over Christmas but I do like the good things that go with it - people tend to be a bit more friendly and cheery and that's a good thing (when they aren't stressed out over shopping/ cooking/ all the family getting together). If you can enjoy the good bits that's the best thing I think!

So, happy public holiday - hope you have a relaxing enjoyable couple of days!

21 December 2007 at 12:07 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

well, good on you for wishing others well in their enjoyment of the season despite your misgivings. best wishes for you and yours! :) kirsten @ assemblage

21 December 2007 at 2:30 pm  
Blogger Eero said...

I can identify with your misgivings regarding the season...

I too hate the rampant, overwhelming, commercialism of the holiday. Also, there is a lot of pressure to bow to social and familial tradition---regardless of liking it or not. I tend to really resent social obligations, being a deep-rooted introvert! The whole season really stresses me out and I avoid most of it.

Gotta say---I love Solstice because it means we've hit midwinter, and we'll start gaining light again at the 64th parallel!


21 December 2007 at 4:34 pm  
Blogger Madge said...

I see a witch's hat! (yeah, you can tell where I'm going in the afterlife, can't you?)

If it's shiny I'm pretty much in favor of it, so I love the pagan drenched wonder of the winter holiday season. Therefore: may you and Goat have a sparkly, joyous Yule, Carson! May it be psycho free, with treats for humans and canines both.


21 December 2007 at 7:27 pm  
Blogger shula said...

Um, are we in the same family?

I learnt as a child to become very, very wary of Christmas. People had a way of losing their minds, you could set your watch by it.

It's taken me 35 years to learn to relax a little.

21 December 2007 at 7:51 pm  
Blogger MWM said...

thanks for the dry spot of humor this year. You totally get it.
I look forward to more in 2008.

21 December 2007 at 10:48 pm  
Blogger Loraine said...

no we're not doing the christmas thing either , to many people died in our family , the ones that kept the whole thing together.

but i like making cards to wish people a happy new year

so lots of good wishes for next year ,and lots of post from you that make us laugh about things and not take things to serious.

thanks for that !

22 December 2007 at 11:21 pm  
Blogger Suse said...

That's the best Christmas tree I've seen in ages.

23 December 2007 at 1:03 am  

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