Friday, December 18, 2009

Don't Mess With Christmas

I'd bet that you never thought that I would post something by the guy who taught me everything that one would ever want to know about being a busboy in a cafeteria dumbwaiter station, Garrison Keillor. Really! I should have stuck with him and become a disciple and be known as "Ray Ed Marshall", sound effects geek. That is my name and I did want to be a sound effects man (you could say then) in the days when radio dramas were common on the AM band.

But here is a snippet of a recent post of Keillor's in the internet magazine, Salon.
Like many elderly gents, Keillor, baptized a fundamentalist in the days before the Prosperity Gospel, is more interested in his faith these days.

. . . .Unitarians listen to the Inner Voice and so they have no creed that they all stand up and recite in unison, and that's their perfect right, but it is wrong, wrong, wrong to rewrite "Silent Night." If you don't believe Jesus was God, OK, go write your own damn "Silent Night" and leave ours alone. This is spiritual piracy and cultural elitism and we Christians have stood for it long enough. And all those lousy holiday songs by Jewish guys that trash up the malls every year, Rudolph and the chestnuts and the rest of that dreck. Did one of our guys write "Grab your loafers, come along if you wanna, and we'll blow that shofar for Rosh Hashanah"? No, we didn't.

Christmas is a Christian holiday -- if you're not in the club, then buzz off. Celebrate Yule instead or dance around in druid robes for the solstice. Go light a big log, go wassailing and falalaing until you fall down, eat figgy pudding until you puke, but don't mess with the Messiah.

Christmas does not need any improvements. It is a common ordinary experience that resists brilliant innovation. Just make some gingerbread persons and light three candles and sing softly in dim light about the poor man gathering winter fu-u-el and the radiant beams and the holly and the ivy, and you've got it. Too many people work too hard to make Christmas perfect, find the perfect gifts, get a turkey that reaches 100 percent of potential. Perfection is a goal of brilliant people and it is unnecessary where Christmas is concerned. . . .

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