It's not that I don't like Christmas. It's fine. I remember plenty of great Christmases in my youth. Like the one where I got the new re-vamped GI Joes, the SuperJoe line. It was a sci-fi version of GI Joe, and since my older brother and cousin had moved on from GI Joe to titty mags, it was mine, all mine. The Shield, the cyborg with a... well. Shield. Attached to one of his arms. That he couldn't throw at Nazis like Captain America could. But it had a tiny light in it to scare people!
Luminos, the see-through cyborgy looking thing that had light up eyes that, presumably, you could use your vast imagination to pretend were lasers cutting the enemy in twain, although I usually used him to pee at night.
Gor, King of the Terrons, who apparently were some kind of insect-lizards who fainted when you shone a light on them.
And of course there was SuperJoe with his1-2 Punch, his black friend because it was trendy in the 70s, and Darkon, the green-skinned version of SuperJoe who was also one of those almost naked villians.
That was a good Christmas for me. As was the one where I got ROM.
What made me sour somewhat on Christmas was becoming one of The Poors. Mom's mental breakdown when I was a kid happened at really a bad time for all of us, especially when Dad had to declare bankruptcy for the medical bills racking up. (Badmouth Obamacare? Of course I will. It doesn't go far enough.) After that, I got to see the real spirit of Christmas, which is, "What did you get?..."
Every year at school I'd be asked that, and when I gave an honest answer of "Nothing," I was treated to derision and ridicule, as if I was trying to engender sympathy for my situation. What was I supposed to do, lie? Say we got a Nintendo? Everybody knew we were poor. Why did they bother asking what we got, was it just to feel superior? Whatever.
I don't hate Christmas, but I don't like what Christmas has become, some kind of tournament to see who got the best goodies. Because we became poor for a while (strictly speaking we still are now), we stopped celebrating the holiday like that. When possible we still gave gifts.
While both Kelly and I lived far from home, we would coordinate to visit all at once close to Thanksgiving to celebrate all the holidays and have (since Kelly's birthday was Dec. 8th and mine was Sept. 11th) what we called "BirthThankMas."
So now that Dad has passed, we will really appreciate the true meaning of this holiday. It's about appreciating what you have and showing others you appreciate them, even when you don't know them. It's not about what you get; it's about what you give.
I'd sure like that Absolute Top Ten collection though.