Next week is Christmas. It's easy to get caught up in the shallow, petty, trivial bullshit that our Christmases seem to be made of nowadays. As I get older I realize more and more that a lot of people just don't get it. Christmas should not be a hectic event we use to bulk up or maintain our social standings. Gifts should come from the heart. What ever happened to sincerity? Where is the love for the Christmas meal we share with the people we love?
And I'm sick of all the arguments regarding "the reason for the season." It doesn't matter why you celebrate Christmas. The holiday itself is a large conglomeration of many different religious, pagan, and solstice celebrations rife with various weird and peculiar symbols none of which any one religion can rightfully claim as their own. None of that matters. What does matter is love. Use this Christmas to take stock of the people you love. And be with them. Truly be with them. Because some day they (or you) won't be there.
I learned something poignant and beautiful on Sunday night from Family Guy of all places. A few weeks ago Seth MacFarlane, the creator of Family Guy, decided to kill off Brian (arguably the show's best character). They even replaced him with a new dog, Vinny, voiced by the wonderful Tony Sirico. Family Guy fans were outraged! But, alas, it was the end for the beloved Brian and people slowly got over it and moved on with their lives. But Sunday night Brian came back! It was glorious! Admittedly, I got a little emotional about it. Then later that night Seth MacFarlane tweeted this:
"And thus endeth our warm, fuzzy, holiday lesson: Never take those you love for granted, for they can be gone in a flash."
Amen. Let's eat.