Is It Just Us, or Has Holiday Bad Behavior Has Gotten Worse This Year?S

Circle up, team, because it's time for a serious chat. The holidays can be a stressful time, what with all the forced family togetherness and dear God the expenses, and it's not like the 24/7 seasonal music helps.

This year, though, you'd think Mercury was in retrograde and maybe we were all hexed, too. Judging from the stories coming across the transom, people are acting up even worse than usual. It seems—I hate to say it—that Christmas has perhaps finally sent the entire nation around the bend.

Have you been reading local news, lately? What is going on?

  • A Salvation Army bell-ringer in Phoenix says a woman hit her in the arm for saying "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas."
  • In New Jersey, someone tried—and failed—to set an atheist billboard ("Keep Saturn in Saturnalia") on fire. If there is a God, someone will round up the team that made Saved and turn this into next year's feel-good holiday hit.
  • A made-up story about an atheist teacher suspending a kid for saying "Merry Christmas" went viral, and now a San Francisco school is dealing with a flood of hateful emails and angry phone calls, to the point they've added extra security.
  • In L.A., a frat holiday party/toy drive at an airport Radisson allegedly turned into a brawl, with suspects "throwing chairs and tables."
  • A Massachusetts woman accidentally drove through the plate-glass window of a hardware store and destroyed their holiday display.
  • A Louisiana woman decided a giant middle finger would be great Christmas display. Her neighbors responded by destroying it—so she added a second giant middle finger.
  • In Italy, alleged mafiosos have been arrested and accused of forcing shop owners to buy poinsettias for as much as 100 euros.
  • In New Haven, a man named "Noel" climbed a Christmas tree on the town green and began ranting about the holidays.
  • There are multiple reports of stolen Christmas presents. Someone even stole cash meant to buy presents for literal needy children. Meanwhile, in Canada, a couple was charged with "public mischief" for allegedly lying about having their gifts stolen.
  • A mall Santa didn't even make it Thanksgiving before being charged with indecent assault and battery after allegedly pinching a coworker's butt.
  • Let's not forget the Florida woman who stole a bunch of holiday decor off a dude's lawn (with his help, no less).

In the movies, these types of foreboding incidents typically build to the fucking apocalypse. What is even going on? And now, as if Megyn Kelly taking a stand for White Santa weren't enough, everyone with conservative relatives has to go home and argue about Obamacare pajama kid vs. goddamn Duck Dynasty.

So let's all just take a deep breath, pour a big glass of bourbon-heavy eggnog and concentrate on not hitting someone upside the head with wrapped gift on Christmas morning. K?

Image via Getty