Tis The Season

A Time For Honest Reflection

"as i write this i realize once again how god is a lie and humans are mostly terrible. life continues to have its 'ups and downs,' but overall there is a great deal to be grateful for, like potato chips that magically taste like buffalo wings. we see again the truth that even in dealing with adversity we grow. the important things are still netflix, forgiveness, and al pastor tacos. as we celebrate another christmas and another year i know that we all hold dear in our hearts the memories and the petty, soul-killing minutiae of each endless motherfucking day. thank you dear ones for allowing me to reminisce and [...]


"Baby Jesus Stolen" Nativity News Watch 2012

According to the latest tally on Google News, there are 2,803 current media reports involving stolen Baby Jesuses from nativity scenes. This represents a [made up percentage] increase in nativity infant thefts over 2011, which had held the previous record with [made up number] documented desecrations of Christmas scenes. Many are wondering just how low we can go, as a species. If children and other pranksters think it's "okay" to lift a plastic baby with a hole in its bottom for a colored light bulb, then what else might people do, given the chance?

"It is one thing, I guess, to steal even the shepherd or a king," said [...]


The Bells Were Ringing Out

Here is the story of the greatest Christmas song the world has ever known, which turns 25 this year.


Have You Started Running Out The Clock Yet?

You can feel ppl heading for the hills and off the grid. plan on joining tomorrow.

— david carr (@carr2n) December 22, 2011

Happy Deceleration Thursday, where everyone who still has a job starts quarter-assing it in anticipation of the Days of Dread ahead. How will YOU be slacking off for the rest of the week? Tell us in the comments!


"Silent Night" As You've Never Heard It Before

This is just a remarkable performance of the holiday classic. I've watched it several times already and will almost certainly do so again. Then I need to go see the brain doctor, because something bad is clearly going on up there in my head.


Santa Old

Is this Britain's longest serving Santa Claus? Sure, why the hell not.


Michigan Children Learn The True Meaning Of Gay

It's a Christmas miracle! Or, you know, a holiday miracle. It's some kind of miracle, anyhow. I mean, I guess.


How "Baby It's Cold Outside" Became America's Secular Christmas Anthem, Despite People Claiming It's About Date Rape

Betty Garrett and Red Skelton, reversing roles in the song's 1948 Hollywood premiere.

This Christmastime, last Christmastime and for many holiday seasons past, writers and commenters of the Internet have gathered to argue over the holiday classic "Baby It's Cold Outside." The conversations and accusations are rarely about the song's merits as a Tin Pan Alley jazz-pop composition. Instead, we wonder if the playful exchange of the man and woman is actually the loaded conversation before a sinister date rape. Or is the whole song just a harmless relic of a bygone time when "The answer is No" meant not "No," but "maybe just a half a drink more," [...]


The Best Holiday Movies To Watch This Week, Proven By Video Clips

Zooey Deschanel, when she was blonde and kind of snarly! Will Ferrell in barely controlled hyper-idiotic hilarity. Bob Newhart! Christmas in New York City. An inexplicable subplot involving an independent publishing house specializing in children's board books. This movie has everything good about the holidays. A little entertainment enhancement goes a long way, too.


Horror Temporarily Postponed

"Shoppers Drug Mart pulled Christmas music from its almost 1,200 stores across Canada at midnight Friday after hearing complaints from customers that they weren’t quite ready for the season to be jolly." —Okay, that "moving to Canada" thing finally makes sense.


Wall-Rubber Lacks Mirth

"Mariah Carey in a pornographic Father Christmas costume rubbing herself up against a wall without laughing – says it all really."


Bad Santa Stalks Germany

"A man who sometimes likes to dress as Santa Claus continues to haunt Berlin Christmas markets this week, offering drinks spiked with what is believed to be the drug liquid ecstasy to unsuspecting revelers. Police have been trying to hunt down the man the tabloid press here have dubbed 'Bad Santa' for over a week now, and on Wednesday they released a composite sketch of the suspect based on descriptions provided by witnesses."


A Possible Cure For The Christmas Song Blues

I was in a CVS last night buying smoked almonds and dental floss—yes, yes, it's all rather glamorous over here—when "Most Wonderful Time of the Year," a song which never fails to send me into paroxysms of depression, started playing. I had somehow managed to avoid it thus far, but now I have the Christmas sad. I am going to try to listen to these actually great Christmas songs to cheer myself up, but sometimes it's just hard.


Here Is What To Get Rich People For Christmas

"[T]he most popular gift that all income groups want to receive is money, either in the form of gift card, check or gift certificate. Ranking second was clothing. Among those worth $800,000 to $1.49 million, the third most popular gift is an iPad or similar tablet computer. For the $6 million or more crowd (the real one-percenters), the second most popular gift is books or CDs. Fine jewelry was more popular with the affluent than the one-percenters (only 2% of the one-percenters want jewelry this season, compared with 8% for the affluent). Yet the one-percenters are twice as likely to buy sport equipment."


You're Still Alive: Now What?

Hope, as we are so often reminded by smug new-agey types or court-appointed therapists, is not a plan. So if your head hit the pillow last night with a degree of serenity long absent from your regular efforts at slumber it was no doubt on account of your fervent faith that an obvious misreading of a Mesoamerican date planner would somehow provide the finality to all things for which you have been desperately craving but too paralyzed to do anything about yourself. And yet here we are, not only not dead but about to head into the teeth of the season where the manufactured enthusiasm is as mandatory as [...]


"Here We Come Assailing" (Traditional)

"For those of us who have any active associations with wassail, they are probably musical. 'Here We Come a-Wassailing' is about as likely to turn up on your supermarket’s holiday Muzak loop as 'The Christmas Song' or 'Frosty the Snowman.'" —Today in the Times' Dining section, Rosie Schaap provides a recipe for and history of the traditional holiday drink wassail. Wassail is a warm punch made of cider and ale and spices that is enjoying a comeback in Brooklyn cocktail bars. It is intended to enliven spirits and lower inhibitions so as to encourage people to join in a Yuletide sing-along. But Wassail comes from England, which [...]


Santa's Sinister Sidekick

"Christmas is nearly upon us and, with all its commercialism and saccharine rituals, it's all too easy to forget the true meaning of the season. Thankfully, the sanctity of this glorious holiday is still appreciated in parts of Germany and Austria where good, hardworking folk remember that Christmas isn't merely about the gifts; it’s about dressing up like a cloven-hoofed demon, terrifying children with violent, demonic folklore and drinking 180-proof licorice-flavored liquor until you puke." —Feeling festive yet? Why not celebrate the season by revisiting this holiday classic about Krampus, Santa Claus' demonic buddy.


Against Gift Giving

I would like to make a proposal: Let’s all stop giving presents to anyone over the age of 12.

We can consider this a new front in the laughably famous and obviously fictitious “war against Christmas” that people like Glenn Beck and Rick Perry always talk about. Because I’m really only proposing this for the holiday season. (So the following all goes for Chanukah, too. Oh, and birthdays. No presents on birthdays, either.) Presents at other times of the year, random days on the calendar, are fine. Like, if you’re going over to someone’s house, you should bring a bottle of wine. Or if you’re browsing in a bookstore [...]


Family Dresses Funny

You could view this report as the heartwarming tale of a family brought together by its tradition of dressing up in comical holiday outfits, yearly proof that despite the passage of time and the differences that come between us as we grow and change, Christmas stills retain the magic of our earliest childhood memories, when all was wonder and joy. In fact, that is exactly how I suggest you view it, because the alternative—the story of a group of adults held hostage by a megalomaniac matriarch whose need to humiliate her spouse and offspring on a yearly basis is probably driven by resentment and regret over the paths her [...]


Man Bites Man

"A father had his finger bitten off in a brawl with another parent as they waited for their children's nativity play to begin."