Retrogressing 16 years ago. I used to stay up so late at night, just sitting outside and admiring the elaborate set up of the Christmas lights in our front lawn. Christmas. Ah the good ol holidays. Though a little bit of snow would be a good idea, I was fine with the whole christmas lights and lanterns (parol) set up and the good ol Belen (Nativity scene) by our front lawn. It never failed to pull my heart strings back then. Looking up the sky, I see the stars shine brightly in unison with the flickering lights in our lawn but there was no sign of Santa's sillouhette on his proverbial slay and proverbial reindeers bringing that proverbially big bag of toys and that hearty proverbial Ho Ho Ho. But I'm cool with that. I never believed in Santa anyway. Even before. Or atleast, I never believed he'd set foot in the Philippines. Besides, I figured since we didn't have winter here, there's no use for any chimneys anyway and leaving the gifts outside might not be a good idea. The last time someone did, we had the bomb squad, K-9 units and police surround a house a couple of blocks away because some idiot left a suspicious looking, nicely gift wrapped box lying outside their home, only to find out that it was just a set of plates. Somehow the nincompoop was too lazy to even bother waiting for someone to open the gate up and recieve the parcel. Can't blame us. We've had bomb threats back then and we can't be too sure.
Anyway. I used to love the yuletide season. I was even too eager to help out my mum with decking the halls (or atleast the walls in our house) with assortments of hollies, Christmas balls, and what not to make our once bleak dwellings into a winter wonderland. It was heaven, smelling the christmas pine scented candles and the red and white candy canes which heralds Jesus Christ's birthday (he's probably 2 thousand years old already...). The impending holidays gave me that warm and fuzzy feeling.
That was then.
Blame it on my realization that Christmas has become too commercialized as time went by but... Christmas has lost its magic on me. Have I finally outgrown Christmas?
When the Christmas fever has hit the town, your first worry is... what you're gonna give your friends, family, relatives, and god children. And then there's the expenses and the long queue in the shopping malls and the preparation for the Christmas shin dig. And then the next thing you know, you'd probably be asking yourself why the heck do we have to celebrate christmas anyway?
And the same thing happens over and over again every freakin year. Grinchified much? Nah... just jaded.
Soon you realize that christmas is just for kids. Why? Coz they don't fucking have to spend a cent in Christmas! They don't have to bust their ass so we could all enjoy this wonderful spread on Christmas Eve and have a fabulous Christmas tree by the living room.
And why am I ranting about kids and Christmas? Because they're too young to realize that Christmas has lost its real meaning to these capitalist assholes and commercialism! Tell me. What's the first thing you think about when Christmas day approaches? And puhlease... Don't give me that hypocritical crap about remembering the birth of Christ and being with your loved ones... Because chances are, IT'S NOT.
Of course, you think about all those presents you'll be getting on Christmas eve. And the shindigs. And how much pounds you'll gain when the New Year celebration ends. Care to disagree you pretentious oaf?
Sure, the ads portray otherwise but try to take away the whole sugar coated family values front and what you'll get is a clear message: Buy our crap! Buy this Ham and you'll have a blast this Christmas. Get your kids this latest gadget and they'll love you for the rest of your lives. Reward yourself with our brand new sedan this Christmas. And the list goes on.
And what about those who can't barely even afford to have a decent meal, let alone a feast on Christmas Eve? Being with their family no longer gives them enough consolation because... THE MEDIA TELLS THEM CHRISTMAS AIN'T COMPLETE WITHOUT THAT SUCCULENT HAM AND THE QUESO DE BOLA THAT COSTS A FORTUNE!
Over the years, I have watched Christmas become one big business venture. A capitalist's ploy to generate more income by ensnaring the gullible youth with the wrong message. And who suffers this whole conspiracy? Us consumers and the spirit of Christmas itself.
So tell me again, what does Christmas mean to you now?