Tis the season to be jolly?

Canadian Santa Claus drawing from 1875

Image via Wikipedia

Christmas… A time when people rush about buying expensive stuff they can’t actually afford and often, for people they don’t even really like!

At the onset of December I began my usual period of seasonal dread. Once agin my annual feelings of trepidation, dismay and some anger consumed me. At this time of year, I’m wishing and waiting for January, it simply can’t arrive soon enough.

I understand all the historic reasons behind the Christmas period, both pagan and Christian and, I fully support the somewhat ethical pipe-dream of peace on earth goodwill to all etc. The problem is; hardly any of the ‘original’ and ‘traditional’ stuff of Christmas actually exist any more. When I say they ‘don’t exist’ some maybe do to some people, and if they don’t they should however, what is the reason for all this?

Much of it is simply down to a constant diet of media fed slurry, our regular consumption of hype and sensationalism about anything and everything. We live in a commercial world, driven by aggressive marketing designed to fire up our competitive nature. The marketing gurus employ all the tricks and gimmicks, to encourage us to actually buy things we don’t really need. We even get ‘seasonal’ adverts starting in October on TV and all the retail outlets have had their ‘festive’ displays for bloody weeks!

We haven’t so much forgot what Christmas was/is about, it’s more because we have been brainwashed into believing materialism is king. We (mistakenly) believe that what we own (or give away), dictates how we are perceived by others and is an indicator of our success, importance and quality as a human being.

Anna Raccoon’s ‘alternative media blog, renowned for; ‘satire and its first cousin irony’, berates much of this seasonal tosh, it also echos many of my views…

The Christmas Boar: Why? That’s what I want to know. Why do we make such a fuss about Christmas? Not the Christians of course, I can see why they would want to celebrate Christ’s birthday; I can even understand the Bank Holidays, this is officially a Christian country. (Read more)

Dr. Matthew Ashton (Senior politics lecturer – Nottingham Trent University) also suggests ‘politics’ has a big role to play in how we view the festivities. He is running a month-long blog, all the way through December, looking at Christmas from a range of academic perspectives…

The Politics of where Santa Lives: …a lot of people are very concerned about where Santa Claus lives. The reason for this is that being able to lay claim to be the official home of Father Christmas is a huge marketing and tourist device worth hundreds of millions of dollars every year, not to mention all the merchandising and film rights. (Read more)

I suppose I might have looked at Christmas slightly differently or with a ‘normal’ viewpoint, if I’d actually had a ‘normal’ life, but I haven’t. As a child I grew up in a pub, Christmas day was just another working day for my family. During the last thirty five years I’ve only ever had five Christmas days when I haven’t actually been at work myself, one was due to illness and two of them are since I retired. The whole holiday season is simply another day another dollar!

And as a cop… Just because it’s Christmas, the scallywags don’t stop their criminal activities and people don’t stop needing police help; if anything there is an even greater demand at this time of the year. People still get their property stolen, their houses broken into, and levels of violence often increase due to the drink factor. People have accidents in their vehicles and people die. Christmas, or the consequences and results of Christmas are often miserable for many people.

Rest assured, many working environments are no different; that little shit who aspires to management, and tried to get one over on you earlier in the year, will still be trying to stab you in the back in the new year, despite the Secret Santa gift, a few smiles over a sausage on a stick and glass of fiz at the office party.

All the above helps to dictate my Ebaneezerish seasonal views. I also suspect that thirty years as a cop, experiencing all the inhumanity, dishonesty and disgusting levels of excess in our society,  provided the nails to seal the lid on my coffin of fake seasonal festivity… Tis the season to be jolly?

Merry Bollocks & Happy Bah Humbug!

(Note to self: Remember to place bucket of slop by upstairs window for use on carol singers!)

Advertisements

About Dave Hasney

National Coordinator for UK SMART Recovery - Previously a Recovery Worker and prior to that a Management Consultant and H&S Practitioner - Kept sane by Angling, Good Food, Real Ale & Wine - Cynical thoughts sometimes developed from others.

Posted on 05-12-2010, in Business Babble, Leadership & Management, Public Service Babble, Society Babble and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: