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NTF : December 6th 2010
It was late in October,when all through the house, not acreaturewas stirring, not even amouse. The tree was erected by the fireplace, in the hope that Christmas holidays soon would be there. Ye s, this journalist put his tree up in late October.Why? Because the past couple of years, the inner Christmas spirit has been in decline. In abid to fully appreciate the upcoming season, Iwanted to get in early.Carols and all. But talk about backlash. “C’mon... Christmas is two months away,” said one friend after Iposted a pictureofthe tree on Facebook. “What next? Throwing aNYparty in November?” And that’swhen Inoticed the negativity towards Christmas. About the shopping centres putting up their decorations too early.About how irritating Christmas carols are. About the annoyance of a family member bringing their baby to Christmas lunch. What’shappened to us? Then there’s the fact that we’reall looking forwardto Christmas purely because of the fact we’redesperate for aholiday. Instead of embracing and celebrating the spirit of Christmas, we’recomplaining about how busy we areand wishing away what has already been aquick year. Granted, this year has been tough. We’re tired, overworked, underpaid and most likely unappreciated, but does this give us reason to forget the beauty and innocence we once held for Christmas? In aworld that’sconstantly changing – for better or for worse –what can we look forwardtoifwecan’teven look forwardto Christmas? I’m no expert on alot of things, but if Iwas to be an expert in anything, it would be about Christmas. Personally,Ifeel we just need to rediscover our inner child – inject ourselves with Christmas spirit to go back to basics. Get out the arts and crafts box, grab acopy of Mariah Carey’s Christmas album, throw on aSanta hat, and live the Christmas cheer.Find the excitement once again. Student Christopher McLaren, 21, says he believes in the Christmas spirit, above all things. “For me, Christmas signifies the celebration of another year past, and another to come. It is the chance to share your experiences and memories from the year with your friends and family while enjoying food, drinks and wonderful gifts from your loved ones,” he said. “Weall grew up anticipating the end of the year –when we would get to see our extended families and Santa would deliver us gifts from the sky,what a magical thought! “I’m surewecan all remember that overwhelming feeling of excitement. I believe this is the Christmas spirit –the coming together of our loved ones. And each year we affirm the spirit of Christmas by giving gifts of love and sharing those magical feelings.” Unfortunately,not all of us share the same spirit. “Christmas has crept up so quickly this year; Ihaven’thad time to get my head around it,” explained James Te lfer,25. “I’ve celebrated Christmas properly with family when Itravel home for the day,but in Sydney it’sadifferent story.Wedidn’t put up atreeorany decorations in the apartment this year.It’snot like I’m staunchly anti-Christmas, but the thought of getting into the spirit is so exhausting. “When you live with aroommate there’s the question of who actually forks out the money to buy the tree, and then putting it up takes time. Then you take it all down again and as we know,Christmas trees arenotoriously hardtostore, especially in small inner-city apartments,” James said. “I sound like the Christmas Grinch, Ilove the festive season, but Ifavour the less symbolic, laborious and traditional aspects of the period such as going on holidays, spending time with family and indulging in great food and wine –and, of course, presents! “ But isn’titthe traditional elements that make this holiday so appealing? McLaren says it all. “If you choose to skip out on the best holiday of the year, that’syour prerogative. Iwill never let the spirit of Christmas die. Ta ke asecond and think of your fondest Christmas memory. What has happened since? Think of the laughter and happiness that children and families shareonChristmas Day –isthere anything purer than that? “Christmas is the one chance you get each year to spread love and kindness among your friends and family,sodon’t waste it by being aGrinch –celebrate it!” Merry Christmas to all, and to all a goodnight. Coverstory CHRISTMAS COMPLAINTS ARE ON THE RISE AND IT’S LEFT MATT YOUNG WONDERING, IS THE CHRISTMAS SPIRIT DEAD? CHRISTMAS ...we’re all looking forward to Christmas purely because of the fact we’re desperate for aholiday. 16
December 13th 2010