Sure, the song says, "It's the most wonderful time of the year." For me, the "holiday season," Christmas especially, is an absolutely terrible time of the year, in which my only goal is to get through it with the least possible amount of unpleasantness. Frikkin' ghastly.
I do try to buy kewl gifts for the younger family members. Kids expect that and none of their parents are especially well-to-do.
But I gotta tell ya, if I didn't have family and friends, I'd ignore the whole thing. It's a nightmare, a constant invitation to maudlin maunderings from too-related persons best kept at arm's length or unwanted drama in uncomfortable circumstances. My motto is "show up, shake hands, shove off," hopefully before getting sucked into any who's angry at who, carping that family member N is manipulative and who Y may or may not be sleeping with. Gah. You can't even keep track of them all without a program, of which there isn't one.
Work isn't much better, with social-climbing parties and "secret Santa"ing and plenty of pressure to Officially And Publicly Help The Poor. Damned if I will if I gotta pray on streetcorners to do it; oh, I'll help 'em, but not any way I'll talk about or even post here. That's between me and them, a matter of beneficence, not boasting.
(Just to make the season better, my car messed up yesterday, darned near got me killed on my way to work by stalling in the middle of a street I was crossing and cost me just shy of $400 to get back running, that after turning down the replacement catalytic converter [$$$!] and "fuel injector service package" [$$$!] in favor of new spark plugs & related. Had to explain to the poor chap that no matter if "it was throwing codes," his service plan would effectively total my car and I'd prefer to address the problems one step at a time. -- Relatedly, the good mechanic at that place is MIA, replaced by a guy who struggles to print an invoice. Not goin' back; if the car does need more work, I'll at least go to a place where they'll BS me with more finesse.)
CHICAGO RAILROAD FAIR, 1948
1 week ago