Friday, December 01, 2006


Hark! Alas! The holidays are approaching, and I hope that you are all getting ready for your particular celebrations, whether you come from a tradition that enjoys a good mid-winter reprieve by setting things on fire for several days in a row and handing out chocolate money, or from one that goes all out throwing a huge party for someone's birthday (and giving EACH OTHER presents instead of him).

I celebrate Hannukamas, also known as Christmaskah, as my family of origin is a unique blend of Jewish and Catholic, with some new age and Buddhist inflection (courtesy of me). My (Jewish) aunt came up with Hannukahmas, and it stuck. When I visited her a few years ago, there were little dreidels and Hannukah gelt in the stockings, red and green candles in the menorah and red & green wrapped presents under a Hannukah bush/Christmas tree (decorated, of course, in blue and silver).

Tara grew up Mormon, so she celebrates by having lots of wives and wearing funny underwear. Just kidding! She only has one wife (to-be) and I'm sure her underwear are quite nice. And anyway, this year she's celebrating by having big holes cut in her walls, sewer lines replaced, and a stiff wind in her bedroom courtesy of the lack of fully-installed doors. Having 6 workers blasting away at her house all day gives it that festive "home for the holidays! the gang's all here!" feel.

But I digress.

I got to thinking: Maybe Hannukahmas isn't inclusive enough as it stands.

My former officemate (an African American woman) decorated our calendar with "Merry Christmahannukwanzakah" which I think will be my new holiday greeting, although it leaves out our pagan friends and their winter solstice celebrations.

Perhaps Merry Christmahannukwanzakahice would be better. That's pronounced "Christma-hannu-kwanz-a-kah'-iss" The alternative is "Christmahannukwanzasoltsikah," which I like better. That one sounds a lot like this: "Christma-hannu-kwanz-a-sol-stih'-kah." It is reminiscent of an Eastern European train stop, or something you say to your comrades while tossing back a very potent Vodka drink.

What says you?


Blogger gs said...

What about us atheists? We feel left out. For us, the season is a social and cultural phenomenon. We want to be part of the all-inclusive greeting, too!

2:58 AM  
Blogger keri said...

I think that's why they started saying "Happy Holiday" to include everybody. It works for me and it's much easier to pronounce.

We got our tree up this weekend and our cats are causing much mischief. Especially Pookie who is our Christmas kittie. We got her two years ago at Christmas time. It was so cute watching her as we put up the tree. I also pulled out the fluffy stockings which she immediately snuggled up with when she wasn't trying to chew on the (fake) tree.

8:23 AM  

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