I have avoided engaging in the Christmas Wars. Even though working for the Catholic Church would seem to put me on the front lines.
It really doesn't matter to me whether a person says Happy Holidays, Season's Greetings or Merry Christmas.
I don't flaunt bumper stickers, T-shirts or lapel pins with messages like Keep Christ in Christmas, Jesus is the Reason for the Season or It's okay to wish me a Merry Christmas.
I ignore the silly "Christmas" songs on the radio. You know the sort: Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer, Yingle Bells, Hairy Christmas and such. I hum Christmas Carols to myself.
The town hall lawn can be adorned by menorah's, creches, Kwanza candles till it looks like Disney World for all I care.
I avoid malls, outlets and shops from November through January. I blithely delete all the e-mails offering me one last chance for free shipping before Christmas. I have no clue what the latest must-have toy or electronic gadget is. If other people want to get all involved in that consumerism schtick ... hey, more power to them.
I may be a devout Roman Catholic but I have always lived in very diverse communities and I don't expect the world to revolve around my belief system.
BUT DON'T MESS WITH MY CHRISTMAS FOOD!
Not one single local grocery has had a stollen or a fruitcake for sale. And, yes, I have been making the rounds since Thanksgiving. I finally had to break down and order a 2lb fruit cake from Harry & David for $29.95 plus shipping and handling. Still can't find a stollen. I'll be surfing the Internet to find the nearest German bakery tonight. If I have to go into the city [NYC] just to find a stollen, I am going to be one cranky elf.
And do you know how hard it is to find old-fashioned candy canes in red and white stripes flavored with peppermint? Oh, there's french vanilla, spearmint, cherry, cherry vanilla, root beer and eggnog flavor. For all I know, there's even spinach and tripe flavor. And the colors: rainbow, green and white, blue and white [for the Channukah trade?!?], brown and white, cream and green, etc.
And marzipan. I need this to make pignoli cookies. Has it suddenly ceased to exist?
Come to think of it, I haven't seen any chestnuts in the produce sections of the supermarkets, either. Peanuts roasting over an open fire just doesn't have the same cachet!