Warning: Scrooge-y thoughts ahead.
1. Gift buying.
You know what I like? I like seeing something at a random time of the year that reminds me of a person I love and then getting it for them, and saying, I thought you would like this. I do not like the frenzy, deadline and expectations put on Christmas gifts. Your mind gets in a weird place, when you're shopping, and you start thinking anything, ANYTHING would be a great gift. Who doesn't want a new keychain, right? If you're broke, it feels even more horrible. The worst part — and this happened to me last night — is when you get a gift from someone when you didn't get them anything. They say it's better to give than receive, but sometimes receiving comes with heap of guilt.
And don't get me started on Santa, the old white man who wants me to sit on his lap before he'll bring me what I want. It's just twisted.
2. The tree.
Growing up, we always had pretty great trees. Then my sister saw FernGully. How could we cut down her "friend" in the prime of his life? Sap is basically blood and CAN'T YOU SEE HE IS BLEEDING? CAN'T YOU FEEL THE PAIN? She was half-joking but it kind of took the magic out of it. I love the smell of evergreens… but. The ornaments are always broken and lights are a pain in the ass and my mom has this thing about not having old business in the house for the new year so we'd have to throw the tree out on New Year's eve and get pricked with pine needles and seeing the carcasses lining the streets of New York in the weeks after Christmas is basically like a never-ending commercial for seratonin drugs. Where does depression hurt? Everywhere. Who does depression hurt? Everyone. See also: Wreaths.
3. Traveling/Not traveling.
If you go away around Christmas, you're guaranteed a travel nightmare. Traffic, long lines at the airport, delays, etc. And it sucks when people go away… Unless I am also going away. Otherwise, fuck you and your beachy Facebook pictures. No, but seriously: I'm from New York, so I am often here on Xmas. And I hate when all my homies go out of town. :(
4. Religious and racial tension.
I am black. But. Please don't wish me Happy Kwanzaa. I never even heard of Kwanzaa til someone told me about it when I was a freshman in college. I mean it was invented in the '60s and whatnot so I thought it was for blippies and the white people who love them. Anyway 11 months of the year I'm an atheist into astrology, who likes religion in terms of Ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans, but only goes to church if someone has died or is getting married, and even then, feels awkward. Then Thanksgiving hits and I'm supposed to be all Merry Christmas Happy Hannukah it's so awesome that the baby Jesus was born like thousands of years ago, here is an iTunes gift card!
5. Egg nog
See previous item.
7. Closed businesses and empty streets.
New York is the town where you're supposed to be able to eat caviar, rockclimb or pop out for a pint of beer — or ice cream — 24 hours a day. But on Christmas, the bodega has its gate down and you're standing in the street like what am I supposed to use for toilet paper now? Do people deserve a day off? Yes. But after the long lines and frenzy of pre-Christmas shopping, the sudden stoppage — followed by the post-Christmas sale insanity — is kind of sad.
8. CAROLS. For the love of God I heard you the first time in Duane Reade when I was trying to buy tampons. You "need" a little Christmas. Okay. Well get on that. I don't want to hear it in the grocery store, in the cab, in the manicure place, at the Chinese takeout place, in commercials, and as my super's ringtone. I do really like Nat King Cole, though. Sigh. But when Janice Dickinson and Bob Dylan are doing Christmas songs, isn't the genre over?
Year-end lists, Christmas lists, complaint lists. Like this one.