Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Monkey Brain and Christmas

Today I sat down to knock out a blog and was immediately hit by an attack of the dreaded “Monkey Brain” –and this time my swinging from thought to thought kept landing on Christmas. So, let out a good Carol Burnet “Tarzan yell” and see where the vines take us…. 

Is Santa Clause “white”? On her show, Megan Kelly stepped in it pretty good last week when she said that Santa Claus was a white man. That raised a firestorm of controversy with a lot of African Americans saying they saw him as a Black man, and that putting a ‘White” label on him was racist. Bill O’Reilly then did a segment on his show where he established ‘beyond a doubt’ that Santa Clause was definitely White because he has his roots in Saint Nicolas, who was a Turk (a very dark shade of White).

My question is: Who cares? Our modern Santa Claus is not Saint Nicolas – our Santa is a mythical figure and each of us pictures him a little differently (according to our individual imaginations). That’s fine because each culture can modify him to have characteristics they can relate too –and that includes his skin color and race. He is, or is supposed to be, a fun guy spreading good cheer and happiness and keeping the kiddies entertained and trying to be good (so they can rake in all those toys).

So who cares? –Santa should be whatever works for you. We don’t need a Federal Agency regulating Santa so he is the same everywhere for everyone. We need nothing more than to let him make us smile and laugh and enjoy Christmas a little more. 

Speaking of Christmas, let’s talk about Christmas gifts for a minute. Why do we give gifts at Christmas? The answer is very simple. Because we care about people –friends and loved ones-, and we want to show that we care. However, it gets out of control way too fast.

Now days we give to impress people –and that’s just wrong. You should never give something because you want to impress someone or to buy their love or friendship (trust me, it won’t work). You should never, ever buy something you can’t afford, or because you might feel guilty for not giving enough.

As an adult, when I started making pretty good money, I used to buy my parents fairly nice, pricey items. I did that because I loved them and wanted them to have something nice –and because I felt a little guilty for not being a little better son during the year (you know, not writing or calling more often or taking them out to dinner a little more, things like that). What happened was, they felt guilty for not buying me something nicer, and they wound up getting me stuff they could not afford –just to keep up. I finally had to put a stop to it and we called a summit where we proclaimed an end to the competition by placing a limit on how much we would spend on gifts. That worked out very well for us.

Over the years I have bought my share of pretty nice presents for people. But you know what? I have noticed that the little presents –the little ones I bought for people because I thought they’d enjoy it, or it would make them smile or laugh- those are the things I still see in their homes when I visit. They are the ones they remember a couple of years later.

I love the little presents –especially those that didn't come from stores, like homemade cookies. I had a secretary give me a little Snoopy she made out of golf balls once- and I loved it. 

So this Christmas, don’t get all stressed out on gift buying. Just get what you can afford and pick out something you think will bring the person a smile –you’ll all have a little merrier Christmas and a much happier New Year without all those Visa bills to start it off.

And now, here’s “The Politically-Correct Santa" –I found it surfing the web and thought it might bring you a little smile:

Politically-Correct Santa

'Twas the night before Christmas and Santa's a wreck...
How to live in a world that's politically correct?

His workers no longer would answer to "Elves",
"Vertically Challenged" they were calling themselves.

And labor conditions at the north pole
Were alleged by the union to stifle the soul.

Four reindeer had vanished, without much propriety,
Released to the wilds by the Humane Society.

And equal employment had made it quite clear
That Santa had better not use just reindeer.

So Dancer and Donner, Comet and Cupid,
Were replaced with 4 pigs, and you know that looked stupid!?

The runners had been removed from his sleigh;
The ruts were termed dangerous by the E.P.A.

And people had started to call for the cops
When they heard sled noises on their roof-tops.

Second-hand smoke from his pipe had his workers quite frightened.
His fur trimmed red suit was called "Unenlightened."

And to show you the strangeness of life's ebbs and flows:
Rudolf was suing over unauthorized use of his nose
And had gone on Geraldo, in front of the nation,
Demanding millions in over-due compensation.

So, half of the reindeer were gone; and his wife,
Who suddenly said she'd enough of this life,
Joined a self-help group, packed, and left in a whiz,
Demanding from now on her title was Ms.

And as for the gifts, why, he'd ne'er had a notion
That making a choice could cause so much commotion.

Nothing of leather, nothing of fur,
Which meant nothing for him. And nothing for her.

Nothing that might be construed to pollute.
Nothing to aim. Nothing to shoot.
Nothing that clamored or made lots of noise.
Nothing for just girls. Or just for the boys.
Nothing that claimed to be gender specific.
Nothing that's warlike or non-pacific.
No candy or sweets...they were bad for the tooth.
Nothing that seemed to embellish a truth.

And fairy tales, while not yet forbidden,
Were like Ken and Barbie, better off hidden.

For they raised the hackles of those psychological
Who claimed the only good gift was one ecological.

No baseball, no football...someone could get hurt;
Besides, playing sports exposed kids to dirt.

Dolls were said to be sexist, and should be passe;
And Nintendo would rot your entire brain away.

So Santa just stood there, disheveled, perplexed;
He just could not figure out what to do next.

He tried to be merry, tried to be gay,
But you've got to be careful with that word today.

His sack was quite empty, limp to the ground;
Nothing fully acceptable was to be found.

Something special was needed, a gift that he might
Give to all without angering the left or the right.

A gift that would satisfy, with no indecision,
Each group of people, every religion;
Every ethnicity, every hue,
Everyone, everywhere...even you.

So here is that gift, it's price beyond worth...

"May you and your loved ones enjoy peace on earth."

Live Long and Prosper...

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