Ryan Chartrand

‘Tis the season to be jolly, unless, well, you’re not into all the media-hyped holiday festivities that go on. ‘Tis also the article where I promise that for the rest of the “Guides to Life” I ever write, I will never use the word “’tis” again. So, I might as well live it up, because ’tis article will only happen once, and I would like to continue to use the word as incorrectly as possible. While we’re at it, I promise that I won’t use the word “jolly” again in any more of my “Guides to Life” either1, so just bear with me for the rest of this one while I have my fun.

Anyways, since this is the last article I will be writing before winter break2, I thought it would be fitting to break down the holiday season for you. Even though it might seem to be pretty straightforward, it sure can be confusing.

I’ll start with the big one, Christmas. As a Jew, and to be honest, a writer who doesn’t do much outside research, I really don’t know anything about this holiday. I believe that the holiday marks the birth of Jesus Christ. Apparently, JC came out of the womb a little plump, really red and fully bearded. And, ’tis the reason for Santa Claus. Well there is that reason, but there is also America’s obesity problem and crappy job market, Christmas gives opportunity to fat, unemployed men everywhere to play Santa Claus3.

So anyways, back to the birth of JC. I think we all know that in the Bible and whanot, JC was quite different than anyone around him. Now I’m not saying he’s different whether he is the Messiah or not, but rather a bigger difference. Of course, while the other children had normal dogs and cats, Jesus had nine reindeer. It was a lot to keep track of, but WWJD?, well, Jesus put Rudolph in charge to lead the way, taking some of the responsibility off of himself to take care of them.

While this was all taking place, someone had the genius idea to put a big ass tree inside JC’s house, which also stuck in today’s traditions4. Remember that since JC’s mom Mary likely did this, people would sort of have to let her do what she wanted. I mean, she was already a little nuts by having a ton of reindeer, so it was obvious that nobody would get in her way and tell her she couldn’t have a tree inside.

Moving on to the one I actually should know something about, which is Hannukah. Now, right off the bat we can have fun with this and spell it Hanukkah, Hannukkah, Channukah, Chanukah, or whatever other way you want to try. Just as long as when you say it you make the coughing-of-phlegm noise, while saying the beginning of the word, you’ll be correct while saying it. Now, Hannukah is known as the “festival of lights5.” Because of this, it often gets mixed up with Christmas because of all the lights on people’s homes, but you should be learning the differences from this article6.

The basis to this holiday is that the Jews’ temple was getting destroyed by the Syrians, and all they had was a little bit of oil or something. To make a long story short, the oil lasted eight nights instead of the one night it was supposed to. The Jews were able to fight back and win, and hooray, ’tis’ holiday was formed. To commemorate the joyous occasion of beating the odds and overcoming a huge war, today Jews all over the world gamble using a little top known as a dreidel – pretty good way to remember the bloodshed and war if you ask me. Nevertheless, us Jews do it anyways, surely not wanting to boot any of our stereotypes by betting, watch out, 10s of 10s of pennies at a time. ‘Tis sure is a fun time though!

Another popular trend today for Jews is to eat oily foods like latkes and doughnuts during the holiday to remember the oil that lasted the eight days. Seemingly, this is because, eh, we already have huge noses and thick hair, so could eating some of the worst foods possible really hurt our appearance that much? I think you get my drift that no, there is no help for us. But hey, at least us Jews are good at sports, right7?

Well anyways, ’tis does it for another “Guide to Life.” This break, I hope your Christmas or Hannukah, or whatever you celebrate is a jolly one.

1 Unless of course I’m talking about a barbershop quartet, because there is no other way besides “jolly” to describe one.
2 Don’t worry though, all my work is on www.mustangdaily.net for your reading over break.
3 And with the authority to grant children their present wishes while the kids are on the men’s laps?
4 They also actually tried to take sheep crap and smear it all over the walls in their house, but that one surprisingly wasn’t as popular a practice.
5 I thought there should actually be at least one real fact in this piece.
6 Annnnd welcome back to more ridiculous shit.
7 Oh wait, no.

Mike Heimowitz is a journalism senior and Mustang Daily humor columnist. Find out what kind of clay ’tis guy makes his dreidel with at www.mikeheimowitz.com.

Oh, and catch him on Tuesdays next quarter.

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