In which I learn sign language — 5 Comments

  1. I love Christmas (the holy day, not the vulgar, moneygrubbing season that seems to begin earlier every year), but I hate almost all Christmas music played in public places.

    The low point for me was a couple of years ago on a December evening when my wife and I were in our local grocery store. While cruising the aisles for our necessities, I became aware that something was bothering me. Annoying me. Irritating me. Angering me.

    And then it hit me. It was the music they were playing over the loudspeakers in the store. But not just any music. It was Christmas music. Sappy, syrupy Christmas music.

    Being sung by Neil Freaking Diamond.

    I was treated to listening to Neil Diamond, a New York Jew, singing “O Holy Night” and “Silent Night” and (it hurts to even type these words) “Ave Maria.”

    The most craven, greedy, commercial, whore-ish display I can imagine. I mean, not only was the music itself execrable, but….how could Diamond sing hymns and carols about a Person in whom he does not believe and in fact has publicly mocked?

    I was wroth. But not David Lee Wroth. I was sickened. And to this day, I’m never in that store without thinking of that experience.

    When we leave our homes, we open ourselves to be assaulted by all manner of ugliness.

    • One of the great plusses of being housebound is that I can avoid shopping centres and in particular supermarkets [apart from the local “supermarket” which is more just a grocery store]. All my general groceries are delivered right into my kitchen thereby avoiding the crowds and – at this time of year – the awful crap they pump through their sound system, presumably with the intent of “putting us in the Christmas spirit”. Even at home the radio and television seems compelled to insert some aspect of Christmas into music and films. It is relentless and infuriating.

      As someone who was raised a Catholic but who has great admiration for some of the old Pagan festivals this is indeed a special time of year, but a time for peace and celebration in a quiet manner. With great emphasis on the quiet!

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