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Well, another Christmas come and gone. Insanely long lines of people waiting for stores to open so they could buy the Santa-butt neck pillow have been replaced with insanely long lines of people waiting for the exchange window to open so they could return the Santa-butt neck pillow they received as a gift.
Christmas, as we know it, began when the church adopted the annual festival of Saturn (“Birthday of the Unconquerable Sun”) and declared Dec. 25 to be the birthday of Jesus.
Saturnalia was quite the celebration back then. For a week, Roman authorities would discard law and order, punishing no one for theft, rape, damaging of property and other fun holiday activities. One “honored” person would be declared “Lord of Misrule,” forced to gorge himself on rich foods and engage in physical pleasures for the week and then murdered as a sacrifice to Saturn.
The holiday’s intent was to commemorate the return of light (Winter Solstice). The mayhem and sex and murder were added just to make the week more fun.
Today, the holiday is a time for quiet family dinners, solemn religious observances, and frantic ripping open of packages to see what Uncle Bob got you for Christmas. (Damn it! He got me a Santa-butt neck pillow!)
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