- Holidays and Celebrations
I Hate Your Christmas Letters
As I Open the Mailbox...
They usually start arriving the early part of December and often in some festive looking envelope - a yearly letter from that one rich relative you never speak to and is too good to come to your holiday gatherings. Or it's your great-aunt gushing about her grand-kids (that you've never met) and how many vacations they went on this year. Either way, receiving those letters is the single most annoying thing about the holiday season. Here's why you should stop sending them:
Your Kids Did WHAT?!
I don't care. Really I don't.
Most of these letters begin with talking some about how fast the year went by (isn't that how it always works though? Why do you persist in mentioning it EVERY single letter?) but inevitably they jump straight to my least favorite topic: the kids.
Suzie turned 9 this year and she's no longer in softball, but this year she's really excited about swimming lessons and dance class. We've already picked up her new bathing suit, it's pink with little ruffles and polka dots, which you can see in the photo on the left...
Here's the thing, I don't care what Suzie's doing. Thank you for reminding me of her age so I jot the right one down on her next birthday card, but beyond that I couldn't care less. I don't need to be reminded of how many opportunities little Suzie has for extracurricular activities, so stop rubbing your cushy socioeconomic status in. I could barely afford to put up a tree this year...
Tommy turned 13 back in November and he's sure become quite the rowdy boy. The star athlete of our family, Tommy excels in basketball, football, and soccer! He spends a lot of time shooting hoops with his friends in the backyard, but now that he's a teenager we know he's going to start taking an interest in girls. ;)
Again, why do I need to know how many sports your Tommy boy 'excels' in? And that glib comment about girls....puh-lease. You have no idea what's going on in your teenage son's head - he's probably secretly smoking cigarettes and swearing at other kids on Call of Duty. You know, COD, that one violent video game you didn't want him to have but bought anyways because all the other kids are playing it? Are you just the coolest and most understanding mom ever! You make me sick.
After a brief blurb about whatever jobs you still have (and how wonderful they are) we get to vacations. For some reason, every single person who sends a Christmas letter went on some grand vacation over the summer that they're just DYING to tell you all about - even though you already saw all the pictures on Facebook while sitting at work.
It's usually never any kind of grand locale either - you either went to Wisconsin Dells or Yellowstone National Park or maybe, Las Vegas. Let's be frank here, everyone goes to places like that at some point and we ALL have the same stupid experiences, so you don't need to rehash how wonderful the water slides were in your letter.
If you traveled to, say, Jamaica or Tokyo during the year...feel free to tell me all about how cramped economy seating was, how much the kids cried on the flight over, how picky they were about the food, how the water made you sick, etc. Give me the interesting details and not some racist rhetoric about how "colorful" the culture was.
But you wish me well....
I understand that your life is just so busy and so you can never call, email, or show up to any family gatherings, yet you still hold on to this pretense of wanting to know how my life is going. Really? I'm sure you'd just LOVE to hear about how I lost my job a month ago and can barely afford to enjoy the holidays now. I'm sure you want to know all about my health problems and medical bills. Or maybe I'll just make up some sappy story about how freeing it is to be single again...
No. You don't care about me or what's going on in my life, so why should I care about yours? Why should I even open your stupid letter and infest my brain with all the perfection that is your family and your life? I don't want to......
But I do. Because the holidays make masochists of us all.