I am pleased to report that Hanukkah is proceeding swimmingly. J. has bestowed 2 more gifts upon me since I last wrote. On Night 4, she insisted I throw out my homosexual hosiery and replace all with pristine white sport socks (Night 4). I feel straight wearing them, but wearing them I am, as we speak. Yes, with my new socks on, I don’t look remotely gay. Night 5? Edible treats from the Dutch store. Once you’ve had Dutch licorice, there’s no going back. And Dutch milk chocolate? I don’t know what those cows eat, but their milk makes darn fine chocolate.
Our friends W. and C. have jumped on the Hanukkah bandwagon this year too, leaving a gift per day in our mailbox. I’ve received all sorts of great stuff, including a no-salt-added daal spice mix (a true Hannukah miracle), matches in a stunning box to light the Hanukkah candles, and, because they are such diligent blog readers, an apple with local honey following my last post. I love this holiday! Yesterday, they dropped the gifts for the three remaining nights off so I could open them on vacation.
Yes, Hanukkah has so many things going for it. Instead of getting all your gifts on one day, everything is spread out over 8 days. Sure, you may have the 12 days of Christmas, but what the heck are you going to do with 8 maids a-milking? 10 lords a-leaping?
And consider the festive foods: I’d take latkes and jelly donuts over turkey and green bean casserole anytime. Of course Hanukkah food has to be better since all the traditional holiday foods are fried. Oh, and then there are those melt-in-your-mouth chocolate coins. All bases covered.
But the best part of Hanukkah gift giving is that it is in no way contingent on behaviour. I can be naughty all year and I’ll still get 8 days of presents. Come to think of it, having to be nice all year is a lot of pressure on a young child. It’s amazing more Christian children aren’t neurotic.
To add insult to injury, I’ve recently learned–thanks a lot, you know who–that Santa is all seeing and all knowing, so even if you’re naughty and don’t get caught, Santa will add the infraction to your annual score sheet. There’s no hiding from that guy. Think about all the times you’ve done something you shouldn’t but no one found out so you got away with it. No sliding any of that past Santa. That’s a lot of pressure.
Whatever happened to unconditional love? Would a parent really leave nothing under the Christmas tree for a misbehaving child? That’s like a parent cancelling her child’s birthday party because the kid was a pain in the butt the day prior.
Don’t fret. We’re all naughty sometimes, Jews and non-Jews alike, and we still get our gifts. As we should.