The Lydster: Part 21

Lydia’s second Christmas, but the first she has started to recognize as an opportunity for presents: dump truck, blocks, xylophone, doll, books, not an overabundance of “stuff”.

BTW, Lydia’s fine, over the case of pink eye. Also over an intestinal distress that forced us to postpone a dinner with our friend Mary and “I-think-they’re-dating” pal.

No new pictures, and no time to write what I was going to write, holidays and all, so here are some ones you haven’t seen, from August through October 2004:

A favorite Christmas recollection

1965: I had a paper route. It was MY route, and I was responsible for it, no one else, it was made very clear to me. But that year, 40 years ago, like this year, Christmas fell on a Sunday, and my father got up and drove me around on my route. It was very special to me, especially since I saw that Santa had already made his way to our house.

Merry Christmas, blogiverse!

Three Questions About Peace

I went to the Rodin exhibit at the Albany Institute of History and Art yesterday. Two-dimensional photos or film cannot capture the sensual nature of the work. If you live in the Albany area, go see the exhibit next week before it closes. If you live elsewhere, go see it when it comes to your town.

Which may or may not lead to the weekly query for you all:

1. What can we, as individuals, do to make the world a more peaceful place?

2. Will there ever be “Peace on Earth, Goodwill to All”, or is that a myth, or just for the afterlife, or you really have no idea?

3. What IS so funny ’bout peace, love and understanding?


My friend Mark sent out this Christmas/Hanukkah merger e-mail thing, which Socks used on December 1. (Another piece on the holiday confusion is here.)

Subsequently, I read that the TV show The O.C., which I don’t watch, has also suggested such a blending a couple years ago. The Yarmuclaus hat (above) is “sold out for the 2005 Chrismukkah season!” – and has been for some time.

So what to make of this blending, complete with Chrismukkah greeting cards?

It seems to tick off this person, who writes:
Chanukkah is probably one of the best known Jewish holidays, not because of any great religious significance, but because of its proximity to Christmas. Many non-Jews (and even many assimilated Jews!) think of this holiday as the Jewish Christmas, adopting many of the Christmas customs, such as elaborate gift-giving and decoration. It is bitterly ironic that this holiday, which has its roots in a revolution against assimilation and the suppression of Jewish religion, has become the most assimilated, secular holiday on our calendar.

Meanwhile, this also ties into what friend Daniel calls “the latest phony baloney distraction put out by the corporate media…”The War On Christmas.” An interesting CNN debate can be found within this blog entry.

Now, Dorian, I’d like to agree with you on this one. Fact is, though, if you say it often enough, this “war” seems to become true for enough people. One of my relatives sent me one of those “Say ‘Merry Christmas’ proudly” e-mails, with instructions to not let “them take it away from us.” The exact wording I don’t have because I deleted it. Quickly.

My favorite Lutheran pastor notes that it isn’t even Christmastime yet.

I must admit that the whole controversy surprised me a bit. I thought we had it all worked out: you have the creche, but the menorrah must be within 10 feet, and also some Kwanzaa colors, with the Christm.., holida.., the coniferous tree nearby.
Lots of people (I’d like to say most people, but…) know that there was no proof that Jesus was born on December 25, but it was a date picked by the church to co-opt those solstice parties. I’ve long theorized that Jesus was not a Capricorn but a Pisces. (What do YOU think?)

So Chrismukkah- place for the “merry mish-mash” of cultural diversity or an attack on both Judaism and Christianity? I think the term’s a bit silly, but as a Christian, I’m not threatened by it, or for that matter, by saying “Season’s Greetings.” In other words, I support W’s choice of Christmas cards. It was inevitable that I agree with him on something EVENTUALLY.

The Madness of King George

“There are such things as roving wiretaps. Now, by the way, any time you hear the United States government talking about wiretap, it requires — a wiretap requires a court order. Nothing has changed, by the way. When we’re talking about chasing down terrorists, we’re talking about getting a court order before we do so. It’s important for our fellow citizens to understand, when you think Patriot Act, constitutional guarantees are in place when it comes to doing what is necessary to protect our homeland, because we value the Constitution.”

– George W. Bush, April 2004
As dumb as this story is in print, especially knowing Fred as I do, what’s more irritating is the TV lead, something along the line of “Is local man a terrorist?” Truly idiotic.
Dan sent this from The Rude Pundit.
The I Word is out there. Yes, it is.
Friday, 12/23/05, 5:30 PM, 3rd Annual Crossgates Mall T-Shirt Walk, Enter through any entrance at 5:30 PM and converge at the food court at 6:15 PM. Please car pool where possible. Wear black. Bring a message of peace written on a shopping bag or attached to your clothing. From Wendy Dwyer’s email proposing this action: “Three years ago on December 21 , nearly thirty of us walked through Crossgates Mall in Albany, N.Y. wearing Peace tee shirts ie: Peace on Earth, Drop Toys Not Bombs and Don’t Attack Iraq. Most recall the arrest of Steve Downs in February when he and his son Roger bought a Peace Shirt FROM a vendor at the mall and wore it in the mall. 48 hours later more than a hundred of us and most local media converged on the mall to question free speech and the mall as the public gathering space. That weekend more than 300 people descended upon the mall and many were thrown out of the mall by Guilderland police, under threat of arrest. These events were reported in the media…all around the world…” Wendy also suggests, ” When we reach the food court area.. ….sing all we are saying is give peace a chance…if people like this idea. THIS MUST BE PEACEFUL. IT IS CRITICAL THIS BE NON-VIOLENT. NO SHOUTING, NO ARGUING” … “ IMAGINE ALL THE PEOPLE…………YOU MAY SAY I’M A DREAMER, BUT I’M NOT THE ONLY ONE, I HOPE SOMEDAY YOU’ILL JOIN US, AND THE WORLD WILL LIVE AS ONE”…John Lennon Wendy’s phone: 518-781-0071 or 518-542-4194