Giskard got me thinking about this regarding Wal-mart's flogging of Christmas goods on late September.... Okay, so I'm not a christian, but I can still respect Jesus' radical politics and his outrageous (even now) social agenda. So... why the hell are we celebrating his birthday by buying shit nobody wants at prices no one can really afford and in doing so supporting a system of economic slavery that produces the shit nobody wants? I mean honestly... I don't know about other economies but I read somewhere that 25-30% of the annual sales of most U.S. business is christmas-related. What would happen if we just decided "no more for me, thank you"? The stock market would probably take a giant dump. Good. What if we put the word out now, October 1, before the frenzy starts, that we are not giving or accepting christmas gifts. What if we followed Jesus' example and gave the money we would have pissed away on the holiday to those who could really use it - probably at least $700 in my case - and called it even? Isn't that what Jesus would do? So here's the plan, folks. Mentally tote up all the energy, agony and money you expend in this corporate orgy called christmas, the exercise that leaves you exhausted, deflated and depressed on December 25th, and instead expend an equivalent amount of time, sweat and money making things better in your community. Do it in ways that don't involve consumerism and 400 trips to Wal-Mart. Hell, just write a check to the local charity and watch football for the rest of the time if that's your speed. Let's spend time actually visiting with family and friends. Break bread with them. Not Wal-Mart bread - actually bake your own. Put your lights up to illuminate the season of darkness. Decorate a tree. Let's not buy worthless crap just because it's a certain month on the calendar. I guarantee you that you will wake up on the 25th of December with a new sense of joy in your heart. Unless you had one too many on the 24th - but that will pass. How about it? Can anybody think of any reason not to do this? The only down side is the sudden withdrawal for children conditioned to get buried in toys at Christmas - could make getting over heroin addiction look easy. For these kids who can't fathom the social issues real well I say let 'em down easy - over the next three christmases show them the injustice and inequality that their expectation (and yours) are feeding, and taper them off to just one nice gift from mom and dad - one real bitchin' gift, not socks or something, and then when they are old enough to understand the responsibility of it all (twelve?) they are weaned off of it.