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So, it's December. The year dies in a couple of weeks; snuck up on us this year, perhaps thanks to the weirdly warm weather we're still having. We're at war, there's no snow, I'm still unemployed, I haven't done any Christmas shopping, and I've gained ten pounds this year.

I have never been so tempted to say, "Bah, humbug" in all my life.

But I'm not going to, because I like the holidays, and was vaguely annoyed recently by a BBC article about a British clergyman who wants to basically disown Christmas because of all the stress and depression associated with what is supposed to be a happy time. I can see where he's coming from—suicide attempts are not something most people want associated with one of their religion's more important holidays—but I think it's wrongheaded. I think it's possible to enjoy Christmas, to rise above the temptation to stress out, to serenely weather familial storms, to stop and smell the evergreens, as it were, and that it would be better to try to do this than to just write it all off as an exercise in crass consumerism that would be better discarded by the high-minded.

I may feel differently after my first real shopping trip later this week, of course.

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Except where otherwise noted, all material on this site is © 2003 Rebecca J. Stevenson