Tuesday, October 29, 2013

October 29: Fairly Christmasy, Season of Joy, Holiday Prayer

It was Monday and all, and pretty near Christmas, and all the stores were open.  So it wasn't too bad walking on Fifth Avenue.  It was fairly Christmasy.  All those scraggy-looking Santa Clauses were standing on corners ringing those bells, and the Salvation Army girls, the ones that don't wear any lipstick or anything, were ringing bells too...

Most people forget that Catcher is a Christmas book.  It takes place just a few days before the holiday.  Holden talks about Christmas trees and Christmas shopping and Christmas "dough" quite a few times.  Perhaps the time of year has a lot to do with his breakdown.  After all, Christmas is not all "tidings of comfort and joy."  For some people, it's tidings of darkness and depression.

As I was driving home this evening, I noticed that the city workers had hung the Christmas decorations on the streetlight posts.  That's right, two days before Halloween and my little hamlet is ready for the yuletide season already.

I have always loved Christmas.  I love its light and spirit of love, generosity.  In particular, I love Christmas shopping, finding the perfect gift for loved ones.  As a parent, I love seeing my kids' faces on Christmas morning when they open their presents.  I love the surprise, followed by sheer joy.  I know the meaning of Christmas.  I know it's not about presents or gifts.  But...I really like being able to give people what they want.

Seeing those Christmas decorations on the streetlights tonight kind of depressed me.  I know I'm not going to able to be extravagant this holiday season.  My daughter wants an iPhone like crazy.  My son wants some new kind of computer tablet for kids.  My wife has a ring I gave her on our wedding night that needs to be repaired.  All of those things are out of reach for me.

It's not going to be a season of joy this year, and I can't do anything about it, aside from...say a prayer, I guess.

Dear Big Guy in the sky,

It's me.  I know You're probably tired of hearing from me.  Sorry about that.  I'm writing to ask You to help me this Christmas season.  I don't know what kind of help I need.  You do.  Therefore, I'm going to have to simply...trust You, I guess.

I love my kids.  I love my family.  I love my friends.  Help me to find a way to express my love this Christmas.  Somehow.

Oh, and while I have Your ear, if you could send us some good weather this Thursday for trick-or-treating, that would be great.

Your loving child,

Saint Marty

Can't we just move from Halloween to New Year's?

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