Christmas - what is the point?

Discussion in 'CycleChat Cafe' started by tyred, 26 Dec 2017.

  1. tyred

    tyred Legendary Member

    50 or 100+ years ago when most people weren't very well off financially and there was also a lot less selection in what they could buy for most of the year, the traditional Christmas dinner and all the trimmings and presents was probably something to look forward to as a break in the middle of winter and little time to relax from a much more physically demanding life than most of us know today. Most ancient cultures had some form of mid-winter feast which pre-dates Christianity.

    Yet today, most of the population can afford to eat reasonably well all year round, the sort of things once considered Christmas treats are usually easily available all year around, most of us have all that we need and are usually given presents we don't even want or need we persist with this tradition.

    I spent yesterday with my family. I don't particularly get on with my family but it was okay, they weren't the problem this time; but I experienced little joy from the whole thing. I made one of my infrequent visits to church in the morning which I did enjoy as I caught up with people I rarely speak to nowadays. But afterwards, a house full of all sorts of food and drink, nothing particular to do but over-indulge so I did, just like most of the population. A day spent feeling shoot with no energy or inclination to do anything other than lie half-asleep on the sofa half-watching the drivel on the sofa that the TV companies consider entertainment these days. I don't feel entertained at all, which is why I choose not to have a TV in my own home.

    Where does the joy come into it? It was the most mind-numbingly pointless day of my life since last Christmas. Counsellors, therapists and self-help books will often give some variation of "do whatever makes you happy." Stuffing my face with food might bring some sort of temporary enjoyment but leaves you feeling lethargic and wasted. It certainly doesn't make me happy. I'd prefer to go out hill-walking, cycling or something but the reality is that after eating so much it is a struggle to find any kind of motivation, yet any attempts to say no to any of the things my mother has cooked or baked is met with "it's Christmas, you need to enjoy yourself!"

    I don't. I like and enjoy feeling fit and active, not feeling like I've inflated my stomach with a bicycle pump.
  2. screenman

    screenman Legendary Member

    So other people's pleasure is different to yours, no shock there as may of us enjoy different things.
  3. screenman

    screenman Legendary Member

    Sometimes I feel other people's happiness is more important than our own.
    dan_bo, gbb, nickyboy and 2 others like this.
  4. StuAff

    StuAff Silencing his legs regularly

    [QUOTE 5092830, member: 43827"]So you weren't happy, spending a day doing things you're not happy doing.

    There is an obvious solution next year.[/QUOTE]
    Dirk and xzenonuk like this.
  5. OP

    tyred Legendary Member

    Absolutely but society tends to label you as some sort of boring killjoy if you say you don't enjoy Christmas.
  6. screenman

    screenman Legendary Member

    There is an easy way around that one.
  7. Slick

    Slick Veteran

    No point telling you how much I enjoyed my Christmas, but if I felt like you described I would be out on the bike or up a hill somewhere. It's not a dress rehearsal, so if you can't stick it for the sake of others move on.
    mustang1, bozmandb9, biggs682 and 2 others like this.
  8. Drago

    Drago Flouncing Nobber

    Christmas is a PITA, an expensive interruption to the otherwise smooth flow of retirement.
    Salar, kevin_cambs_uk, Dirk and 2 others like this.
  9. smutchin

    smutchin Cat 6 Racer

    The Red Enclave
    Chap I know once spent Christmas on a solo cycle camping tour of the battlefields of the Somme.

    I suppose he could have spent his time whining on the internet instead.
    dan_bo, Ciar, Milzy and 3 others like this.
  10. classic33

    classic33 Legendary Member

    Three deliveries of "christmas spirit" made to one house on Sunday. Went with the two delivered Saturday.
    Drago and Slick like this.
  11. mjr

    mjr Comfy armchair to one person & a plank to the next

    The point of Christmas is to celebrate the end of the darkening and the rejoice for the return of the light. If the food and the day relaxing don't make you happy, do something else that does.
  12. numbnuts

    numbnuts Legendary Member

    North Baddesley
    Not wanting to sound like a miserable old git, I most probably am, but this year I wanted to spend Christmas on my own. Last Christmas I spent with my long lost daughter, but she does not want to know me any more, so I had the choice of going to my sister's, it's OK but it's the same old thing year after bloody year.
    My niece and her family will be there and most lightly my nephew will show up sometime during the day with his two unruly kids and I just can't stand it.
    So when I told them, it was like the Spanish inquisition WHY “what are you going to do” “what about the dinner” bugger the bloody dinner. All I need is something to eat, I look after myself for the rest of the year why is the 25th any different, we get it rammed down our necks “you MUST have this and the “must have” toys/gifts and see how much you can spend even if you can't afford it.
    Christmas has lost the plot it is nothing but a ploy to make you spend money on things you don't really need, fine if you have it, but today people want what everybody else has got and they will put themselves into financial difficulty just to say they have got it.
    So this year I got up put the washing on (as I always dot he washing on a Monday) cleaned the bathroom, defrosted the small freezer and the went out for a five mile walk, in the evening I didn't feel like much so I did boiled egg and toast and mince pies with custard I was quite content and I didn't need anything else, but the rest of my family will think/say I'm a miserable old git.
  13. PaulSB

    PaulSB Legendary Member

    I find myself in agreement with every post in this thread. My wife comes from a Ukrainian and Italian background which has given her a very strong sense of needing to cover all the bases at both Christmas and Easter. I’ve always felt we spend too much, buying far more food in particular than necessary, but went along with it when the kids were much younger.

    All my boys, 25, 29, 31, were home and four friends also came for the day. The nine of us had an excellent day. On Boxing Day I sensed a sea change though. My wife commented on the amount of meat leftover from the Christmas meal. When I suggested next year we cut the meal back and concentrate on doing it very, very well instead of working really hard to get a huge meal on the table, to my surprise, she agreed.

    This may sound ridiculous to some but I’ve made careful note of everything we bought, what has been consumed and what has not been eaten or drunk. If I’m honest it’s an embarrassing list with far too much unused.

    Our day was very good with family and close friends and I don’t want to lose that. Next year I plan to cook an excellent meal, probably without all the “trimmings,” possibly without a seasonal theme and I feel sure the day will be every bit as good.

    My lads each gave me a nice bottle which means I’ll be happily set for the next three months. Great presents for me as it means I receive what I really enjoy and each son can spend what he can afford - one turned up with a very expensive 35cl of malt, another a ten year Laphroaig and the last Waitrose cognac. I’d much rather this than spending on something I don’t need and they can’t afford.

    My wife “gave” me the cycling glasses I ordered on Black Friday - down from £140 to £30 - I’m grateful for the other things she gave me and vice versa but do I need them? Mrs Paulsb wrapped the glasses!

    The key ingredient was the company and always will be.
    Last edited: 27 Dec 2017
  14. MontyVeda

    MontyVeda a short-tempered ill-controlled small-minded troll

    Let's ban the commercialisation of Xmas and sack Santa. It should be a purely religious festival for Christians... a bit like Whitsunday. :okay:
    Maverick Goose and tyred like this.
  15. biggs682

    biggs682 Smile a mile bike provider

    What is the point ?

    I agree re too much hype etc etc , the enjoyment comes from watching small children opening presents like a zombie then playing with an empty box whilst there parents work out how they are going to pay the credit card bill

    The vast majority spend too much , eat too much and promise to do it different next year but how many actually do
    classic33, Drago, Cycleops and 3 others like this.
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