Guardian: Obligatory once a year column on skipping Xmas because capitalism, greed

Christmas shopping: Oxford Street, London, Friday, Dec 19, 2014. Source.

Christmas is the stick with which millions of us beat ourselves into brandy-soaked agony for being poor, single, childless, lonely, or simply bad at being jolly. It’s one thing to be single, skint and surrounded by dysfunctional relatives, but it’s quite another when the entire capitalist world is telling you that this is the most magical time of the year. We seem to have lost the script to a pantomime we never even believed in. We have ruined Christmas, without even trying.

Last year the TUC published a study that showed the average British adult borrowed £685 over the festive period, grinding them into a debt that would take until June to pay off. If that adult earned the minimum wage, it would take them an entire year to drag themselves out of Christmas debt – just to do it all over again. And yet adverts, pop songs, window displays and shop shelves scream out that we should be buying ourselves into an orgy of goodwill and glamour – that Christmas has no value unless you’ve paid for it…


It’s a pretty stale topic, but it is slow-news Sunday.

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  • Brett_McS

    Fun Fact for a slow Sunday: the ‘X” in “Xmas” is not an example of lazy commercialism, or an attempt to “take the Christ out of Christ-mas”. It is the Greek letter chi (Χ) which was traditionally used to represent Christ.

    • Icebow

      Avoid getting confused between chi and xi.

      • Brett_McS

        xi = ξ. Physics major talking here.

        • Frau Katze

          I always found that one hard to write. It is not very popular, and I can see why.

          • Brett_McS

            It’s my favourite. So squiggly and curly.

          • Icebow

            The way I write it, it has a little extra tail at the top.

        • Icebow

          Yes, just being lazy. Please remind me of what significance it may have in conventional physics.

          • Brett_McS

            I think it is more of a math symbol, representing the little bit left over in an approximation.

          • Icebow

            I had a grander destiny in mind, though I doubt it will come to pass now.

    • Frau Katze

      I know, thus I have no hesitation to use it.

    • b_marco

      Cool

    • Yep.

  • Icebow

    Guardian: how do I loathe thee? Let me count the ways. I give up.

    • Frau Katze

      It is a rare day there is not a least one ridiculous article there.

  • Dana Garcia

    I will say that I’ve had a couple close calls in crosswalks when crazed shoppers were in a hurry.

    • Frau Katze

      I don’t care for crowded stores either. My kids are grown up. I send stuff from online (heavy user of Amazon).

  • BillyHW

    In North Korea there is no such thing as Christmas presents. Maybe the Guardian staff would like living there.

  • If Christmas has no meaning for you, that is on you. Find some g-d- meaning and stop your whinging.

    Merry Christmas.