Which is undoubtedly enough. I trust no one is actively urging that it happen two or three times per annum. I once had the idea that Christmas should be like the Olympics: every four years. The Summer Olys use the prime time, the quadrennial divisible by four, like the Presidential elections. The Winter Olympics are relegated to the midterm election years. So the first New Christmas could use 2013, and every four years thereafter. 2017, 2021, 2025 and like that. Also, move the holiday itself to the solstice, which is usually on December 21 or 22, occasionally (very rarely) on the 23rd. When a 23 December Solstice happened to fall in a Christmas year, we could call it a Jubilee Year. That would happen very, very rarely. On a Jubilee Christmas, everyone's debts would be forgiven. Also, in the Quadrennial Solstice Christmas which we will first observe in 2013, we will adopt the Days of Awe approach of Judaism and use the roughly 10-day period between the Solstice and New Year to go around and make amends with all the people we've managed to offend or become estranged from in the preceding 12 months.
December 25, 2010
December 20, 2010
My favorite Disneyland thrill when I was a kid was Mr. Toad's Wild Ride, which was a little scary, not too much so, with no nausea-producing, vertiginous changes in altitude or anything, just a ride through a kind of Gothic landscape of dark and vaguely spooky scenes. We should have a real life version of such a diversion beginning with the swearing in of the 212th Congress in about a month when the Republicans, with their huge majority in the House, man their battle stations. The Republicans already control the Senate, somehow, even if they only had, during the 211th, slightly more than 40 Senators, depending on which side of the bed Joe Lieberman got up on in the morning. They could have had 12 or 13 and they would have completely outmaneuvered Harry Reid. The Senate, as we all know, is the graveyard of good intentions. It does seem like a minor miracle that something so obviously right as repealing DADT could make it through that creaking, obsolete chamber, but thank goodness for such moments of grace.
Pretty catchy title, I think, the kind real columnists use. First of all, I want to go on record as saying I'm going out of the Obama-bashing business. No more. It's one of my New Year's Resolutions. I'm motivated by something that Scout said about Boo Radley; it's like killing a mockingbird. I can be as decent as Scout, I think (although that's tough, come to think of it). Barack's problem is that he's just not up to the job. Call it anything you like, inexperience, naivete, constitutional inability to be tough when tough is needed, fundamental confusion about what a chief executive is supposed to do - whatever, it's obvious the media got carried away in 2008 with the chance to elect either the first minority or the first woman President, and did not pay enough attention to the very specific attributes of the candidates in question, focusing solely on the "narrative line" and newsworthiness of this novelty. It was just too good for the networks and news outlets to pass up, and thus, once again, we got sold a bill of goods. There is a very real difference between an Image and an Actual Person, because it's the second version of reality that actually shows up in the Oval Office later, not the Virtual Hologram. There's no point in going over and over this obvious situation, and there aren't going to be any big surprises from here on out. It's all kind of painful to watch, actually.