atheism, Belief, christianity, christmas, christmas decorations, christmas trees, elves, faith, Hanukkah, holiday season, holidays, humanism, Jesus, lack of faith, martinis, misunderstanding christmas, penguins, reason for the season, reindeer, religious celebrations, religious holidays, religious observations, righteousness, Santa, santa claus, secularism, struggling with faith, Styrofoam, Walmart, war on Christmas
“Mommy! I see Christmas trees! See the lights!” That would be my 7 year old all psyched up and ready for the fun of the holiday fun. Santas and reindeer. Penguins and polar bears. Guns and martini cocktails? The first thing out of my 12 year old’s mouth when we get to the far end of the store where Christmas hell has sprung?
“Mom, there’s like, nothing but domestic violence everywhere I look!”
There were several shoppers in the clustered aisle we had ducked into, that turned and looked at him in shock. Not your average shouted out phrase from a 12 year old’s mouth while on a desperate search for cheap tissue paper to use for a craft project the following day. Naturally, with Walmart being full on into the holiday season, all the regular stock of paper we were looking for?
Moved to the cluster bomb that is Christmarish aisles 28 – 40.
Which were filled with the now abhorrent faces of fellow shoppers who overheard my son making a rather astute observation. Who, if they had the awareness of their surroundings like he did, would have been equally as disgusted. Now, let me make a couple things clear here. I had noticed the same things he had as we entered that far section of the super store that was located down by the garden center. Take a look and see why he couldn’t help but proclaim the insanity that is Christmas:
I thought the penguins bullying Frosty the Snowman was particularly heart warming, though I would have preferred one tossing around a baby Jesus, but I digress. Do you really want the image of Rudolph going down a chimney while holding a hunting rifle?
So anyway, we continue our mad search for the tissue paper, and the ornament aisle was as bad as the blow up display, and again, we all ended up laughing at the ridiculous nature of the ornaments, which several women were going through…quite seriously I might add. Their crosses glimmering in the store flourescents as they leaned over to get a closer look at these lovely gems that should most certainly be on a Christ like tree:
Nothing like Quag’s dick in a box to get the family deep in thought over the importance of Jesus’ ornamental recognition, right?
Right then and there, in the middle of that aisle, I looked at my two sons, one being 12, and the other 7. I looked at the blow up displays that were atrociously themed, the ornaments that were highly suggestive of inappropriate adult themes, and no sign of our tissue paper for our little project for the next day.
“This is disgusting isn’t it?”
“Mom, I mean, who puts this stuff up for Christmas? Did Jesus even celebrate Christmas? I thought he would celebrate Hanukkah cause he was Jewish, right?”, my 12 year old asks this very loudly. I can tell he wants to be heard.
“I would imagine people that have no idea what they are supposed to be representing while at the same time screaming about needing Christmas on the store sign and not the horrible word holiday would not see what we do. And yes, Jesus was a Jew and probably celebrated Hanukkah. Which really makes Christmas seem pretty fucking stupid of a double down,” more stares in my direction.
Stares from all around.
“Mommy, the trees are pretty!”, my 7 year old pipes in,”But I don’t like the Santa who crashed his wagon.” His little finger points to a display of Santa looking cross eyed, part of his sleigh hanging from a tree while a penguin smiles next to him, oblivious to the drama.
Several people were just glaring at me. Actually at us. I could literally hear their thoughts.
Atheist. Non-believer. Sinner. Trouble maker. Bad mother.
“I don’t know what is worse. The fact that we don’t believe in this type of thing and get condemned for it, or the fact that these folks do believe it and completely miss the point?” I looked at one lady next to us that had been listening in and she quite literally huffed and shook her head. Didn’t even wait for me to get out of the way and pushed on through with her cart.
And that’s okay. I didn’t give her a nasty stare. I gladly took the small bump to my rump and let her move on.
Unbeknownst to her, my comments weren’t about her as a person. It was a reflection on our culture as a whole. My kids get it, and hopefully they will spread these realizations to anyone they come in contact with. I hope that the perturbed woman, and the other seven or so people around us in that cramped little corridor of red glittery stars, resin cast candy canes, and Styrofoam turtle doves will go home and bitch and complain to their husbands, children, and best friends during a midweek phone call. I hope they remark on it at tomorrow’s church service, and Wednesday night potluck dinner. Scoffing at my twisted view of Christmas and how I seemed to have warped my children.
There are others out there who feel the same way. Not necessarily that they do not agree with religion or God, but that they feel that their beliefs and their celebrations are off track. And now they know they are not the only ones who realize that.