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Festivus
December 21, 2004 4:05 PM   Subscribe

Festivus going mainstream.
posted by semmi (41 comments total)

 
My Wife and I included "Happy Festivus" inserts in the Christmas cards we sent to friends 'in the know'.

I got a lotta problems with you semmi!!!
posted by aurigus at 4:10 PM on December 21, 2004


So who calls firsts on Haughey?
posted by asterisk at 4:10 PM on December 21, 2004


I know it was mentioned and linked earlier to a Seinfeld website, and google has 126,000 hit on it, but the "news" is getting around the country and a bit of humor and sanity is hopefully emerging.
posted by semmi at 4:10 PM on December 21, 2004


Ummm.... linky no worky.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 4:14 PM on December 21, 2004


I do, *.
Although, actually, I have no idea what you mean.

Anyway, since this is a crap post - What other made-up holidays are there? Didn't buffy have one?
posted by metaculpa at 4:15 PM on December 21, 2004


Heyyyyynobagelnobagelnobagelnobagel!

I shall prepare for the Feats Of Strength.
posted by cosmonik at 4:16 PM on December 21, 2004


Okay, linky worky now. Strange.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 4:19 PM on December 21, 2004


metaculpa... see "Feats of Strength", one of the pillars of Festivus.
posted by asterisk at 4:20 PM on December 21, 2004


I actually have friends going to the Chicago event, something about all you can drink manhattans.
posted by kuatto at 4:29 PM on December 21, 2004


Buffy had a YamSham...
posted by 1016 at 4:37 PM on December 21, 2004


Mainstream... 'cause Seinfeld was soooo underground and subversive...
posted by item at 4:38 PM on December 21, 2004


And, Kwanzza is made up...Maulena Ron Karenga made it up, tried to pass it off as legit (predating Christianity and purer thereby), but it was kind of a theological Piltdown Man.

Sorry for no links, new here, don't know how to do it.

But I am sure about the YamSham.
posted by 1016 at 4:39 PM on December 21, 2004


i was actually considering celebrating Festivus this year. the fact that, at every turn, i find myself asking "what exactly am i celebrating?" has lead me to believe that, while i love the spirit of the season, i abhor the commercialism, (my own) hypocrisy and stress that it ultimately brings to my family.

i do have people in the family who take the "christ" part of christmas very seriously; but the bulk of us are really wrapped up in the idea of it being a mid-winter norse drinking festival.

with my son on the verge of comprehending things a bit more fully, i'm wondering what i'll tell him next year:

son: dad, why do we celebrate christmas?
me: well, because everyone else does.
son: are we christians?
me: no. well, not really. gramma is. but we're not. at least, we don't believe in god. i think.
son: is christmas about god?
me: for some people. not all people. i guess it's mostly about the spirit of god...being nice to people and stuff.
<pause>
son: i'm still getting presents, right?
me: oh fuck yeah.

one might ask, "why do anything at all? blow the whole thing off and don't be a consumer drone!" but that's hard, and it will get harder as he gets older. So i'm thinking of scaling back and inventing some new traditions, while using the season as an opportunity to learn about how other cultures and groups celebrate the winter solstice. Festivus may be just what the doctor ordered.
posted by sharpener at 5:52 PM on December 21, 2004


Yah sorry I have no idea what festivus is, and you've not given me enough curiosity to go to the trouble of signing in for the single NYT link.

I'd love a post about alternative holiday stuff though!
posted by freebird at 5:59 PM on December 21, 2004


Well, MeFi is the place for the airing of the grievances.
posted by fixedgear at 6:05 PM on December 21, 2004


A Festivus for the rest of us!

I love Festivus. : )
posted by SisterHavana at 6:06 PM on December 21, 2004


freebird: Then don't comment, please. You also might be interested in this site.
posted by Doug at 6:06 PM on December 21, 2004


I think we should just sacrifice the Corn King and have a big bacchanalia in the fields like in the Good Old Days.

OP: Oh you just relax Doug, sheesh.
posted by freebird at 6:29 PM on December 21, 2004


freebird, is your Google not working or something? Because when I Google for "Festivus", I get a metric buttload of linkies.
posted by Sidhedevil at 6:35 PM on December 21, 2004


Ohmigosh - the link I just posted above has embedded MIDI, I didn't notice with my sound off. Sorry about that.
posted by freebird at 6:36 PM on December 21, 2004


If you see anyone building a big wicker man, run away!
posted by Sidhedevil at 6:41 PM on December 21, 2004


i've always been partial to this site for heartwarming tales of the holidays.
posted by msconduct at 6:53 PM on December 21, 2004


Wow - that google thing you guys pointed out is AWESOME! Thanks!

But I wasn't grousing about a single passworded NYT link without any hint as to why I might care to follow it, so much as trying to get some other alternative holiday action going. Hence the Corn King, hence the John-Barleycorn as Corn King link which I thought was pretty interesting with the sound off. Now I'm off reading about Saturnalia and digging around for my copy of the Golden Bough - did you know it's available in Gutenberg? That sounds like fodder for at least three fun art/programming projects. But this one is a little easier to browse.

And then the next thing I knew I was feeding one of my favorite gnostic texts through the Cockney Slang Translator and knew I'd Gone Too Far.
posted by freebird at 7:22 PM on December 21, 2004


Am I the only MeFier -- and a Jew formerly from NYC yet -- who found Seinfeld grating, obvious in a standard teevee way, and almost totally unfunny?

I'm prepared to stand alone on this.

December 23rd is my birthday -- leave it to that goddamned show to invent yet another reason why my birthday is the least important thing happening this week.
posted by digaman at 7:42 PM on December 21, 2004


I got invited to a Festivus celebration. The 'list of greviences' should keep me talking for hours.
posted by rough ashlar at 7:58 PM on December 21, 2004


Festivus makes it all the way to Lakeland, Florida.

Actually, I'd happily buy whomever did this a beer.
posted by ScarletSpectrum at 8:05 PM on December 21, 2004


And, Kwanzza is made up...Maulena Ron Karenga made it up, tried to pass it off as legit (predating Christianity and purer thereby), but it was kind of a theological Piltdown Man.

Why does every easily-googled Kwanzaa website, then, say things like:

> Kwanzaa, is an African-American celebration of cultural reaffirmation, is one of the fastest-growing holidays in the history of the world. It took root 30 years ago, when graduate student Maulana Karenga, disturbed by the 1965 riots in Los Angeles' Watts area, decided that African-Americans needed an annual event to celebrate their differences rather than the melting pot.

? Surely there would be somewhere, again easily googled, that would demonstrate this counterclaim that Karenga was making ahistorical claims about his holiday.

Sorry for no links, new here, don't know how to do it.

Well, you'd best learn, because you don't have the reputation here yet to pass off speculation as history.

But I am sure about the YamSham.

I'm calling BS, but then, maybe you have something in your pocket. You should know that the claim that Kwanzaa is "made-up" (it's no secret, except to the ignorant) is frequently advanced by white supremacists and fundamentalist Christians; I would hope you're more discerning.
posted by dhartung at 8:05 PM on December 21, 2004


digaman: I got your back on that. Of course, my favorite TV shows feature Chris Morris slowly going mental on camera, so grain-of-salt-stuff.

Personally, I plan on heavy drinking with friends to combat mild Seasonal Affective Disorder and the temporary cessation of financial aid. No fancy name needed.

Merry annual gift carnival!
posted by Coda at 9:01 PM on December 21, 2004


digaman and Coda, is there room on your Team Of Seinfeld Hate? Because I'm definitely on your side.
posted by Remy at 9:07 PM on December 21, 2004


Am I the only MeFier -- and a Jew formerly from NYC yet -- who found Seinfeld grating, obvious in a standard teevee way, and almost totally unfunny?

No.

Except for the final episode, which I consider The Seinfeld Episode for People Who Don't Like Seinfeld. Those four got exactly what they deserved. The "Show About Nothing," at the end, turned out to be a show about justice served.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 9:28 PM on December 21, 2004


I'm calling BS, but then, maybe you have something in your pocket. You should know that the claim that Kwanzaa is "made-up" (it's no secret, except to the ignorant) is frequently advanced by white supremacists and fundamentalist Christians; I would hope you're more discerning.

dhartung. those sites were kind of crummy and not very reputable (imho)... those sites were like a small sect of the fundy's that believe kwanzaa is a hoax. Being raised up around Southern Baptists...and basically having to interact with them everyday...I've yet to hear any of them say it's a made-up celebration. Instead, they are quite curious. (if anything, I've seen Kwanzaa have a political agenda rather than a religious agenda...but that's because my wife teaches and she is governed to enforce the promotion of kwanzaa but cannot share christmas -- but I could care less either way)

The SB's (Who make up a big population of fundy's) I believe are more concerned about saving Christmas...not misleading people that Kwanzaa is a hoax.

also. Where does textbook.org promote they are white supremacists? I couldn't find anything about that.
posted by Hands of Manos at 9:31 PM on December 21, 2004


Am I the only MeFier -- and a Jew formerly from NYC yet -- who found Seinfeld grating, obvious in a standard teevee way, and almost totally unfunny?

i've not seen an entire episode of Sienfeld yet...or Friends.

you are not alone.
posted by Hands of Manos at 9:32 PM on December 21, 2004


In references to birthdays during the holidays, my grandmother was one of triplets born on Christmas Day. For 70 years she got joint presents, but then on her 70th birthday she demanded three presents, one for her birthday, one for christmas, and one more to copensate for past greviances of people giving her joint gifts. I thought it was a great idea.

And I thought Sienfield was good for awhile, until they started running out of material like all of the other long-running sitcoms. The only thing that never got old was Kramer entering a room.
posted by craven_morhead at 9:52 PM on December 21, 2004


Does no one here remember yak-shaving day? Ren and Stimpy, baby.
posted by SuzySmith at 1:24 AM on December 22, 2004


I, for one, welcome our new holiday.
posted by nofundy at 5:08 AM on December 22, 2004


The New York Times has gone crazy with these made up holidays lately. Last week they covered Chrismukkah and the other day they covered a dog's "bark mitzvah". It's kind of amusing actually, I wonder if the Times is just looking for things to write about or people are actually reacting to religion in America. I wrote a little about it on my site.
posted by nbrier at 7:14 AM on December 22, 2004


Hands of Manos, I have no idea what you're trying to say in your posts. Your wife is "governed to enforce the promotion of Kwanzaa?" And how did textbook.org get into the conversation?
posted by Sidhedevil at 9:48 AM on December 22, 2004


digaman: "Am I the only MeFier -- and a Jew formerly from NYC yet -- who found Seinfeld grating, obvious in a standard teevee way, and almost totally unfunny?"

With you all the way.
posted by 1016 at 1:28 PM on December 22, 2004


sharpener, I wish I'd had a father like you!
posted by RemusLupin at 7:57 AM on December 23, 2004



posted by fixedgear at 10:43 AM on December 23, 2004


wow, I have seen/heard references to Festivus, but since it's just latin for festival, or feast, assumed it was basically another word for the Saturnalia - for a pagan winter holiday. In fact, when I started to read this article and it said something like 'most people think it was invented on Seinfeld,' I got ready to think, dumb seinfeld watchers don't even know their pagan holidays! But of course they just meant that it was invented by the dad of one of the seinfeld writers...

And digaman, I'm with you too - I agree completely with devilsadvocate. I found seinfeld irritating and tiresome, but actually really liked the final episode. They were finally making fun of themselves.
posted by mdn at 11:32 AM on December 23, 2004


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