Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Coffee Chat - Christmas too early?

Thanks to Leslie for hosting.

I fully admit it.  I am a Christmas Grinch..  I do not enjoy the holiday and the hubbub around it.  I do not like the crass commercialism that surrounds it (see Friday, Black).  Generally, if I want to buy a present for someone, I will do it when I see something special - it doesn't matter what date the calendar says it is.  I like the spontaneity of gift giving rather than as a social protocol (I also do not like giving birthday gifts for the same reason).  Further, I try to spend quality time with the people I care about year round.  I do not need a special day in order to do so.  If I wanted to spend time with you, I will make time to do it.

Onward in the description of my Ginchiness - since I am not religious, I feel no otherly reason to celebrate this season over any other.  Personally, this is a time of year where religion can create more conflict that it promotes peace.  Why is Christmas more important than Hanukkah or Ramadan or Diwali?  Why do we get days off for Christmas but not those holidays?  How many arguments have arisen out of which celebrations get the most attention?  How many Happy Holidays versus Merry Christmas debates must I endure?  Personally, I would rather take religion away from the equation and make a bigger deal out of a non-secular holiday like Thanksgiving (although it has religious undertones too).

On a less Grinichy side I do like decorations but why only contain beautiful lights and cheery sights to one time a year?  Shouldn't the spreading of  goodwill, charitable giving and the message of peace be a year-round endeavor?  I do not need a holiday to remind me of what should be a daily expectation of humanity.  In total, I do not like the crass commercialism of the secular component and do not feel a religious need to celebrate - therefore this is not a holiday for me.  With this state, I am fully aware that yes, I am indeed a Grinch.

P.S. I didn't even get into my rant on lying to children about a certain fictional character but that would be really Grinchy of me.  One does realize that a certain sleigh would have to travel 650 miles per second, 3,000 times the speed of sound to make a run on a certain evening delivering gift.  Further, the math indicates that a certain person would require to be carrying around 300,000 tons of gifts.   If flying reindeer are ten times stronger than normal reindeer that would mean he would need over 200,000 reindeer to get the job done.  Further, even if that all managed to happen, thanks to the good folks at Stanford we have learned that, "353,000 tons [of gifts] traveling at 650 miles per second creates enormous air resistance - this will heat the reindeer up in the same fashion as spacecraft re-entering the earth's atmosphere. The lead pair of reindeer will absorb 14.3 QUINTILLION joules of energy. Per second. Each. In short, they will burst into flame almost instantaneously, exposing the reindeer behind them, and create deafening sonic booms in their wake... [The driver of said sleigh], meanwhile, will be subjected to centrifugal forces 17,500.06 times greater than gravity. A 250-pound [driver]...would be pinned to the back of his sleigh by 4,315,015 pounds of force."  Is this the science we want to teach our kids?

No comments:

Post a Comment