Let Us Celebrate Together...

Sparks Of Insanity By Vinny "Bond" Marini Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Yesterday our friend MATT-MAN from "Bagwine Ruminations" posted about two women who spent money for billboards reminding people to 'keep Christ In Christmas'...

Now, if they really wanted to do so, they should have taken that money and used it for those who will be without Christmas this year. If someone tells me 'Happy Holidays', I do not launch into a HECK-A-DOODLE fit and blow a few grand on some billboards that will soon be covered with smog and dirty snow...I drop some money into a Salvation Army pot at the store, or buy a toy for a child to donate to Toys For Tots.

Blowing cash on a billboard...hell no.

While reading the story over at Bagwine...I was reminded that there is one special holiday for 'the rest of us'...yup...you got it folks...

The one and only FESTIVUS!

Originally created by writer Dan O'Keefe and introduced into popular culture by his son Daniel, a scriptwriter for the TV show Seinfeld, FESTIVUS is celebrated around the world.

Although the original FESTIVUS took place in February 1966 as a celebration of O'Keefe's first date with his wife, Deborah, many people now celebrate the holiday on December 23, as depicted on the December 18, 1997 Seinfeld episode "The Strike".

According to O'Keefe, the name Festivus "just popped into my head."

Now, you think you might know the customs of FESTIVUS, but those you know are the ones used on the TV program.

The real FESTIVUS - as enjoyed by the O'Keefe Family - is celebrated with family and friends huddled around a table by candlelight, eating and drinking too much, singing in German about a black pig, bitching about people who didn't like them into a barely functional tape recorder, and displaying obscene, hand-scrawled signs of a political nature.

You can find those customs and more in the book by Daniel O'Keefe entitled "THE REAL FESTIVUS".

There is also a book, written by Allen Salkin which traces the modern observances of FESTIVUS, entitled "FESTIVUS: the Holiday For The Rest Of Us".

Rituals of FESTIVUS from the real holiday and from the show include:

The placing of the FESTIVUS POLE (show) - The Festivus Pole is displayed unadorned. The pole was chosen apparently in opposition to the commercialization of highly decorated Christmas trees, because it is "very low-maintenance", and also because the holiday's patron, Frank Costanza, finds tinsel "distracting". Erected on a lawn, balanced in a coffee can near a photocopier, stuck in a pail of rocks in the living room or suspended from fishing line on the front porch. the pole symbolizes nothing.

THE FESTIVUS DINNER (show & real)- the on-air meal appeared to be meat loaf or spaghetti in a red sauce. The original holiday dinner in the O'Keefe household featured turkey or ham followed by a Pepperidge Farm cake decorated with M&M's. In Allen Salkin's book, modern observances of FESTIVUS tend to feature heavy drinking, including beer, rum, bourbon, or wine.

THE AIRING OF GRIEVANCES which takes place immediately after the FESTIVUS dinner has been served. It consists of lashing out at others and the world about how one has been disappointed in the past year. When all who care to have taken a turn griping, there is no required hugging or making up.

FEATS OF STRENGTH (show) - Traditionally, the head of the household selects one person at the FESTIVUS celebration and challenges that person to a wrestling match. The person may decline if they have something else to do, such as pull a double shift at work. Tradition states that FESTIVUS is not over until the head of the household is pinned in a wrestling match. According to the Salkin book, "While there is an undeniable classic elegance to this, real world Festivus practitioners have developed other cathartic methods of discharging pent-up energy against one's fellows, including thumb wrestling and washer tossing."

Of course there are the FESTIVUS Miracles which can occur at any time and must be acknowledged by the shouting of "It's A FESTIVUS Miracle!"

This year, to celebrate FESTIVUS - A Holiday For The Rest Of Us...I will be making donations in each of your names to The Human Fund, the official charity for FESTIVUS

And everyone that joins in the celebration will be invited to partake in the eating of the FESTIVUS Dessert...

Well today I get to do my most favoritest thing in the world...GO TO THE DENTIST!!!!!

Since the Dentist I went to last time no longer takes my Dental Insurance, I had to find someone new...well as it is the end of the year and I have not used any of my benefits this year, I get to have...

TWO ROOT CANALS TODAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


So, tomorrow's post will - most likely - be a repeat of my last big Dentist visit...

Mom Joan and Dad Vince come in on Thursday...will be great to see them...

Pretty much wrapped up the Christmas Shopping yesterday. I do so much on-line it is not funny and all the kids are getting...ummm...can't say here...

But all done with Nancy...which is a grand thing.

We mucked up yesterday and did not post a CHRISTMAS/HANUKKAH/KWANZAA/HOLIDAY/FESTIVUS song, so today, we give you two...

First the standard by which all CHRISTMAS/HANUKKAH/KWANZAA/HOLIDAY/FESTIVUS songs are measured..."White Christmas" by Mr. Bing Crosby...whistle away Bing!

Then an off-beat CHRISTMAS/HANUKKAH/KWANZAA/HOLIDAY/FESTIVUS song...the whimsical "Christmas Island", by Mr. Jimmy Buffett

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21 Of Your Sparks

  1. Schmoop Says:
  2. Happy Festivus, Dammit. Enjoy the root canals, Vinny. Ugh. Cheers!!

  3. MATT-MAN: Get you a** over here and I challenge you to Feats Of Strength..

  4. And the point of this is?....*snarky smile*

  5. Liz Hill Says:
  6. Two root canals sounds like a Festivus 'Feat of Strength' LOL

  7. SONGBIRD: ummmm the sharp end of an arrow?

    TURNBABY: That is is my friend...that it is!

  8. I loved Seinfeld. A Festivus For The Rest Of Us! Which is awesome since I doubt I will get a tree this year due to the weather!

    We are thinking of going white trash and stringing lights to the wall and maybe dangling a few beer cans as well....

  9. Twyla Says:
  10. Happy Festivus! I love it. We're having our annual Christmas dinner on Dec 23rd (yes, 2 days early), but maybe I can convince them all to celebrate Festivus instead.

    We're all headed to the dentist today too...just for cleanings though. Good luck with the root canals. I've had 2 done, with only freezing, and I survived. Maybe they could knock you out and you won't know anything until it's over. :-)

  11. Jay Says:
  12. Can a stripper pole double as a Festivus pole? And if it can, does that mean we can celebrate Fesitvus in a strip club? Cause that would be cool.

    Have fun at the dentist.

  13. Seinfeld rocked. Thanks for the Buffett tune. I thought I owned all his music, but I had missed this Christmas CD. I'll have it by Friday!

  14. STARR: You could just hang a Fetivus Pole and be done with it...then you and Kidlet could do the Airing Of Grievances together....I bet you could come up with some!

    TWYLA: Just put up the Festivus Pole and then Challenge someone to a Feat Of Strength!

    JAY: The problem I see with that is a Festivus Pole is supposed to be unadorned...and at a strip club the pole are adorned with lots of flesh!

  15. BUD: Who didn't love the Seinfeld?!?
    Once again, spreading the wealth of music to those without! IT'S A FESTIVUS MIRACLE

  16. HAH! Oh shit yes that is what we are going to do. Her's are going to be all about her dad, unfortunately. He is on her bad side this month. Something about being told you peaked at 10 can piss a kid off. Especially a teenager who does not act like a teenage. She is just a *wee* bit resentful.

  17. desert rat Says:
  18. OMG! I've been celebrating "Festivas" for years and didn't even KNOW it! (Is it wrong to play poker on Christmas Eve?)

    Bummer on the root canals - yeah, I've been there.

  19. Mimi Lenox Says:
  20. I'm making new traditions at Bloggingham this year.
    I'm putting up a billboard that says - "Put The Heck-A-Doodle Back In Christmas" .......

  21. Tug Says:
  22. Good luck with the root canals - yucka.

    LOVE Buffett's Christmas CD, I've had it for years. Got my card today, thank you - very nice!


  23. ...why can't Jimmy Buffett write good songs like "Son of a son of a Sailor" anymore?...just askin'....

  24. STARR: UGH...how could he say that...he needs to be destroyed in Feats Of Strength

    ADR: Hello there...Absolutely not...there was always a gin or poker game after the meal

    MIMI: I love it!

    TUG: just home...need to go rest...Glad the card arrived safely

    PHFRANKIE: ummm..Jimmy? Wanna answer that one?

  25. Indeed, Fellow Parrothead Phrankie, indeed.

    Bond honey ya just never know with my ex. There are times I actually quite like the guy still. And others that just make me go, "Wait, what?"

  26. Travis Cody Says:
  27. I proudly raise my hand and proclaim that I was not a Seinfeld fan. I do get the Festivus reference though.

    Root canal...YIKES! I hope it went well.

    As for the holiday season, I say we should all celebrate (or not celebrate) in the way that works best for us.

  28. Fred Says:
  29. Festivus for the rest of us!

    Off topic, but my favorite line from Seinfeld is when Terry Hatcher told him, "They're real, and they're spectacular."

  30. Unknown Says:
  31. I love Bing Crosby. I enjoy watching Holiday Inn this time every year when I find it. But I have to admit that I'm one of those few people in the world that HATE, absolutely can't stand, Seinfield. I cringe whenever I hear it on tv and rush to change the channel. I know, I know, I'm one of a few in that regards. Have a Happy Festivus Day anyways!


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