Christmas, You either love it or hate it. Quite honestly, I find myself somewhere in the middle. How could a Jew not be impressed by an entire month devoted to retail? I have made a list of my top 12 ways to survive Christmas:
1. Christmas Cards: If you are like me, you must have piles of all the goys you have ever met in your life. I get cards from my friends, neighbors, and bikini waxer each season. Each time that I open the card I hope to find a nice crisp $20 bill or a check. What do I find? A picture of a family wearing matching J-Crew shirts taken before their was snow on the ground. I recommend skipping a family Christmas Card in favor of the more popular, Yom Kippur card.
2. Christmas Sweaters: C’mon, you aren’t going to meet your snow angel dressed up as blinking Xmas tree. I recommend that you wear a black turtleneck. Everyone looks good in Christmas black.
3. Cookies: Make sure you whine to all your friends that you have never tasted a Christmas cookie. I guarantee that you will get enough Christmas cookies to last you to Passover.
4. Mistletoe: I recommend that you hide mistletoe all over your workplace. Last week I had to kiss Sandra the secretary because we were both under the “photocopy mistletoe” at the same time. I’ve gotten more action this week then I have all year. The Jews don’t have anything like Mistletoe!
5. Christmas Carols: Admit it, you know all the words to every song. Just ask our friend Barbara Streisand. I like to go caroling with my neighbors and slightly change the words to each song to make it Jewish. “Deck the halls with latkes…” “Silent night, Mazel Tov. All is calm, all is bright,” or “All I want for Christmas is Jew.”
6. Midnight Mass: Could you imagine doing Shacharit at midnight? I don’t think so.
7. Santa: People ask me all the time, “Joy, do you believe in Santa Clause?” I reply, “No, but I believe in the Keebler Elves.” I try hard to tell every child that Santa is not real and was created to sell plastic toys. I am a big believer in always telling the truth.
8. Nativity Scenes: I am shocked every time I drive past a nativity scene. It seems to me that Jesus’s father wasn’t present at his birth. I still wonder how right-wingers would support such an untraditional family.
9. Gifts: I recommend ordering one of those really long subs from Subway and go house-to-house offering your neighbors a bite. I did this last year and I was the talk-of-the-town. Pro-tip: Make sure you have someone else help you carry the sandwich.
10. Holiday Cheer: Some people think Jews are all bah-humbug over the holiday. If someone calls you out because you don’t have any holiday cheer, hand them a nickel. Everyone is excited to get a nickel.
11. Christmas Day: As you are aware, the movie theater and Chinese restaurant are the Who’s Who of the Jewish world. I recommend getting dolled up before leaving the house. You never know who you will meet or what job you will be offered or who will propose to you. Last year, Noah Rumfeld gave me a copy of Tuesdays with Morries. Score!
12. Charity: This is the time of year where you go out of your way to make someone happy. Last year, I dressed up as Winona Ryder (a Jew) and gave away cold latkes to kids at the mall. I was escorted out of the mall quickly, but I managed to make five kids really happy.
All in all, Christmas is not a time for you. Christmas is a time for your non-Jewish friends to feel special and important. As Jews, we get the rest of the year. Think about it, you learn about a new Jewish holiday every two weeks! I mean, do you really know what Lag Ba’Omer is? I think not! So sit back and let everyone else enjoy the holiday season. You’ll get your five minutes in the spotlight soon. Americans go crazy over Tu Bishvat.
XOXO and Peace, Joy Veh