Forget the so-called war on Christmas. The real war is on all things New Year. As evidence:
1) We see images of Santa Claus, Frosty, and Rudolph—as well as religious icons from Christianity and Judaism during this holiday season. But rarely do we see images of Baby New Year to the same degree. Abortion may be to blame. In which case this is a liberal plot against the new year. Or a conservative bias against nudity, because most often Baby New Year is butt nekkid. In either case, I bet that both the old man in the red suit and the little baby in swaddling blankets get more image time than the little guy with the top hat.
2) All these “best of” and other ending year lists unduly elevate the year that will soon be no more at the expense of the year that is not yet quite here. There seems to be a list for all things ending-year. And people argue over the lists—what should have been included that was not, what was not included that should have been, what should have been higher or lower than something else—as if these rankings had any meaning.
3) The mad rush of celebrities passing away in the latter days of December is a clear bid for attention from a year-ending-obsessed media. In any given year, about a half of these deaths are of celebrities most people had assumed had already left this earthly plane, while nearly a half were of people who once were famous but who need “of…fame” after their names to let us know why their death is news. Most years there are only a handful of truly famous, truly unexpected celebrity deaths to close out the year.
4) There are numerous day-after-Christmas sales, but few (if any) high profile January 2nd sales. In years where January 2 falls on a weekday, most people just grudgingly return to work. There are no consumerist efforts to, say, get a jump on the Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday gift-giving season. True, at this point on the calendar a lot of stores begin putting out Valentine’s Day decoration and merchandise. But who, truly, starts planning for V-Day in January?
5) Many people make resolutions for the new year. Few keep them—for example, as evidenced by the vast drop off in gym attendance, smoking cessation sessions, etc. People may have good intentions, but somehow these good intentions are never enough. This is due, I believe, to the lack of true commitment to the new year. A lack of commitment that gives aid and comfort to those who are trying to destroy new years.
6) Although many make predictions for what the new year will bring, most seem to make them for the satisfaction of seeing at the end of the year which things have come to pass. No one makes predictions that are that much truly unexpected or that would really be something come December should they come true. Like, say, that this will be the year we learn to clone the gene for human flight. That would be a prediction worth reaching for all year long.
I submit that this neglect of the New Year is an organized and evil effort to keep us focused on the past instead of looking forward to the future; to keep us stuck on what was instead of oriented to what could be. This is an all-out attack. A war. And we must fight it. I’ll volunteer to be one of the foot soldiers on the front lines of this battle. I will not blog these next couple days about all that was in 2009. I will not compile any “best of” lists. I will not lament any high (or low) profile celebrity passings.
My eyes are on the new year: 2010.
Which is, to be correct (and despite the frequent statements to the contrary), the last year of this current decade. Not the first year of the next.