Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas Mr. Shaw, Mr. Chesterton

Christmas is forced upon a reluctant and disgusted nation by the shopkeepers and the press; on its own merits it would wither and shrivel in the fiery breath of universal hatred.

George Bernard Shaw

If a man called Christmas Day a mere hypocritical excuse for drunkeness and gluttony, that would be false, but it would have a fact hidden in it somewhere. But when Bernard Shaw says that Christmas Day is only a conspiracy kept up by Poulterers and wine merchants from strictly business motives, then he says something which is not so much false as startling and arrestingly foolish. He might as well say that the two sexes were invented by jewellers who wanted to sell wedding rings.

G. K. Chesterton

An excerpt from a Chesterton essay on Christmas

And all the old wholesome customs in connection with Christmas were to the effect that one should not touch o see or know or speak of something before the actual coming of Christmas Day. Thus, for instance, children were never given their presents until the actualy coming of the appointed hour. The presents were kept tied up in brown-paper parcels, out of which an arm of a doll or the leg of a donkey sometimes accidently stuck.

I wish this principle were adopted in respect of modern Christmas ceremonies and publications. Expecially it ought to be observed in connection with what are called the Christmas numbers of magazines. The editors of the magazines bring out their Christmas numbers so long before the time that the reader is more likely to be still lamenting for the turkey of last year than to have seriously settled down to a solid anticipation of the turkey which is to come. Christmas numbers of magazines ought to be tied up in brown paper and kept for Christmas Day.

On consideration, I should favour the editors being tied up in brown paper. Whether the arm or leg of an editor should ever be allowed to protrude I leave to individual choice."

Dedicate some of your life to others. Your dedication will not be a sacrifice. It will be an exhilarating experience because it is an intense effort applied toward a meaningful end.

Dr. Thomas Dooley

No comments:

Post a Comment

You are not entitled to your opinion. You are entitled to your informed opinion. No one is entitled to be ignorant.

Harlan Ellison