Saturday, November 12, 2005

It's a Festivus Miracle...

....all the morons have come out for their annual tard-fest!

For those of you who a.) pay attention to the news and b.) can be pissed to care about Walmart's various escapades (I usually perk up when Walmart is mentioned so I can hear how they're pissing on feminism and women in general this time.) will have noticed that they have managed to start the holiday hyper-PC season off this year. The best part is that the ridiculous behavior in the entire scene gives a whole new dimension to saying something abounds. Here's how it all goes down.

1. (I'm Guessing) Red State Shopper emails Walmart complaining that they DON'T use the word "Merry Christmas" in their advertising and stores, instead opting for the neutral "Happy Holidays."

How can anyone possibly care enough to email the company and complain that use a different set of two words than the two words the emailer prefers? I know that there are a lot of people who are more religious than I am, and that's fine, but...have people really not grasped that the entire world doesn't need to and WILL NOT conform to thier concept of what they think it should be? Really? In 2005? I'm starting to think that this kind of behavior is why we don't have flying cars yet, which is what I drew when I got the grade school "draw what the year 2000 will be like" project. I can understand thinking that I would do something differently, or that I don't like something, but..."Happy Holidays" is so innocuous. Can't this Shopper realize that there are in fact people who do not celebrate Christmas? Does she think Christians are being discriminated against? When you can find exclusively Christmas-oriented shops in any Mall or main shopping drag in the country? When was the last time you saw a Hanukkah store or a Kwanzaa shop? In any case, it gets better.

2. "Kirby" from Walmart replies with this email: "Walmart is a world wide organization and must remain conscious of this. The majority of the world still has different practices other than "christmas" which is an ancient tradition that has its roots in Siberian shamanism. The colors associated with "christmas" red and white are actually a representation of the aminita mascera mushroom. Santa is also borrowed from the Caucuses, mistletoe from the Celts, yule log from the Goths, the time from the Visigoth and the tree from the worship of Baal. It is a wide wide world."



This is Working For Any Company In The Freaking World 101. You don't get into any kind of political or religious discussion with someone IN OR OUTSIDE your company, ESPECIALLY not as a representative of your company to a customer. Whether it's true or not - I am sure anyone reading this has heard a million explanations of how other cultures, practices, and religions influenced the Christmas holiday - it is not your decision to make! Don't say it! Shut! Up! I don't know how it could be that anyone could first NOT realize how ridiculous people are about being politically correct, NOT realize that someone who has her panties in a twist about the Merry Christmas/Happy Holidays distinction should MAYBE be handled delicately in regard to Christmas tradition, and then finally NOT realize how inappropriate it is to write an email like that as a representative of a company!

But wait, there's more!

3. The Catholic League - whose logo/crest, it should be noted, is nothing more than a shield with a sword and the initials "CL" superimposed on it - read this, and instead of saying "you are both batshit, and this is petty," rallies 126 other christian groups to boycott Walmart because yo, Christians came up with EVERYTHING Christmassy by THEMSELVES, y'all, and there is NO way that there is ANY outside influence ever came into the picture.

I don't usually see eye to eye with Catholics in general, or all of the various other Christian churches, but I certainly do see the merit in them, and I think generally having a guide which says "being nice to people is a good idea" is okay with me. But come on! This is like when the ACLU allowed their name to be attached to that jerk Michael Newdow's case. (PS - Shut up, 9th District Court.) Yeah, I know, I know, the lawyer was just ACLU SANCTIONED. Yeah. I know. Whatever. The letters "A," "C," "L" and "U" appear together in major news media, and baby, you're involved. JUST. WALK. AWAY. Christ. This highlights my exact problem with many of the Christian organizations in America - everything has to be fought over, and any percieved slight to their cause and belief merits no less than a duel to the death. I want to know how this is in ANY way a. ) any of the Catholic League's business, or b.) something worth being upset over.

4. The demands that must be satisfied for the boycott to be called off? "We want a) an apology for insulting Christians by effectively banning Christmas and b) a withdrawal of its insane statement regarding the origins of Christmas and c) a revision on its website [where customers who search for "Christmas" are redirected to a "Holiday" page despite specific pages for Kwanzaa and Hanukkah]."

I just gave this its own section because it's so juvenile and dementedly worded. THEY HURT MY FEELINGS MOMMY MAKE THEM SAY SORRY! You know what happened why my mom made Superfly and Aloha Lady apologize to me for whatever childhood wrong had been committed? It just felt hollow and insincere and prompted the combatants to think of more ways to booby trap each other.


For God's sake people, come on. Why can't you just say "this is bullshit, Christians are not only denominations who shop at Walmart, NO CRYING IN BASEBALL, YOU IDIOTS"? WHY? It's just so stupid. I can get switching the search engine function, okay, fine. But come on, this whole thing is ridiculous.

Every year the fights over how simple good wishes for holidays should be worded makes me feel sick to my stomach, and reminds me how soft everyone seems to have gotten. No, I don't think people should be using racial slurs or lighting crosses on fire or putting up Holocaustian "No Jews" signs, but this kind of stupidity, where people are simply wishing others a happy holiday? Not even CLOSE, and SO not worth this kind of battle. Is there a reason a Jewish person can't say "Thanks, but I'm Jewish. Have a good holiday," in response to someone wishing them a merry Christmas? Or and even more ambiguous "I don't celebrate it, but thanks"? Is there any reason someone can't reply to "Happy Holidays" with "thanks, merry Christmas"? (Secret hint! The answer to all of these rhetorical questions is "no.") At the same time people are becoming more sensitive and destoying sensitivity. I personally find it a little creepy that people want so badly to meld all of the holidays into one big blob so they never have to admit that people are different. I think it's AWESOME that there are so many great celebrations in a short span - starting with the 100% American Thanksgiving, where homage is paid to pilgrims, really extravagant parades, football, drum corps, eating until you have to lay on the floor to digest and the Fabric of Our Lives, then moving on to watching how each religion, country and family celebrates the end of a year and being together, which is the great part. Don't fight, guys. Jeez.

We made real progress on the yard fingers are still a little tweaky after pulling some very pernicious weeds, but we still have tomorrow to finish up. I think we both got so exasperated that we called it quits. Skeezix got a new leafblower, which LOOKED very hardcore but actually kind of sucked. It was a Ryobi one, and it's a shame because up to this point I've been impressed by Ryobi's stuff, i.e. Dad's hardcored drill/flashlight combo set. But all the attachments started vibrating off when Skeezy tried to use it! Obviously no good. My ring is in getting fixed...I am crossing my fingers that the emerald makes it through, but as the jeweler said, "hopefully the luck of the Irish will come through, eh?" It's just so soft, bending it again might do it in. Crossed fingers everyone! Skeezix - I have got to get a better nickname for him - got me a beautiful necklace for our six month anniversary...It's a sweet little silver pendant with a rose carved on either side (the flower taking up the whole face on one side, and then blossom and stem on the other), and a freshwater pearl above it, hanging from a really delicate silver chain. It is BEAUTIFUL and falls just right. I swear he reads my mind - it's exactly the kind of thing I would have picked out for myself. I love him so much.

The handyman was here this week and put up a wall for Sloth in the basement and a vanity in the bathroom. Dad's gonna have at the sink and the garbage disposal, which I am SO ready for. Yay for handy Dads!

I also called Meathead to ask for the piano Grandpa built, because she told Ma that they sold it a while ago. Skeezix and I are going to try and find it and buy it from whoever bought it. She didn't remember off hand, so she has until Wednesday to get back to me or I'm calling again. I have also been looking through Grandpa's bonsai book, and it's completely fascinating. (Hee! In looking for bonsai links, I found a website that makes miniature crashed cars for you to display with your bonsai. Hah!) I am going to try and work with the bonsai I inherited and make it a real masterpiece - I never realized how much there was to these little trees. Hopefully I can really get rolling with them.

Merry Christmas, everyone!