Back in the World


Merry Christmas and a joyous solstice to you all.

No, not happy holidays, because I said hagg same'ach in October and "Good Ramadan" in November, and all the Jews I know are sick of having Chanukah blown up into their own parallel-Christmas, anyway. Plus Kwanzaa's made up. Wish people a happy/peaceful/whatever holiday on the days that actually mean something to them, people. That it'll make Bill O'Reilly stop fuming is admittedly a downside. We'll just have to find other ways to make his head explode.

Anyhow, I'm back online and catching up on stuff. I've already fielded one call to my parents' house from my advisor, but he doesn't seem too inclined to make a habit of it. I have about a bajillion photos to post, but first I've got to remember to get them off the camera, which I can't do now that I'm at the cafe and the camera's at home. But soon.


Kwanzaa might be made up but that also means that a lot more thought was put into the meaning of Kwanzaa than all the rest of the lot.

Interesting point. Allow me to elaborate.

My tendency is to ascribe lesser legitimacy to aspects of "traditional" culture having a (relatively) recent and highly conscious origin. The idea being, that Christmas, Ramadan, Festivus, or Yom Kipur are ancient and the celebration of such is (typically) part of who one is. The act of partaking in or expressing one's identity should be met with at least a default position of respect and solidarity.

Things like Kwanzaa or Valentine's Day are celebrated out of a choice to do something fun, or political, or otherwise significant. It's an act that inserts itself into discourse and as such invites critical scrutiny. So rather than wish "Happy Kwanzaa" at people, my inclination is to say, "That's interesting ... why do you choose to celebrate that?" If it's still around four or five generations hence, this position might change.

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This page contains a single entry by Milligan published on December 28, 2005 11:44 AM.

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