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Culture, healing, politics and bullshit - Not necessarily in that order

The general, socio-political and very personal rantings and ravings of a hip hop head from the hood hustling for change... Of himself.

You all know me and are aware that I am unable to remain silent. At times to be silent is to lie. For silence can be interpreted as acquiescence.
—Miguel de Unamuno


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Thursday, December 15, 2005

Holiday 'stuff'

I noticed during the holiday season, we tend to get bogged down with 'stuff'. There's always stuff to do, some stuff to get and some stuff we get into that has holiday bullshit written all over it, because these things don't happen in June.

My question is why.

I haven't been much of a holiday person, and I must say that over the years, I've been scandal, drama and financially free due to not being involved in stuff. Now I do have friends and some family that give me the low down on how much extra work and overtime they have to dedicate in order to get the finances and extra time available to both get stuff and get into stuff, and shortly after getting knee deep in the stuff, I hear the complaints, depressed stories and highlights of a stuff filled holiday season. Once it's all said and done, stuff has taken their spirit, wasted their time and stolen all of their money. Not once do any of them blame themselves for planning, financing and executing their annual holiday stuff extravaganza that goes to hell.

I'm still asking why.

Being that this will be my first foray into the holiday season as an active participant, I got a little advice on how not to get knee deep in the stuff. I survived for years doing some of this stuff and never got bogged down with a case of the 'stuffs' You ready? Here we go:

1. You don't need to work overtime to be able to afford stuff..

Just because there is massive overtime available at the gig, or there is a job at ______ which enables you to get 30% off of... Whatever doesn't mean you work it. Take your time, slow down and enjoy the season. That's what it's here for. There are plenty of celebrations and gatherings to attend. Get some rest and hit the road this end of year. And plus, the best gifts are the ones from the heart. Cordless drills, George Foreman grills, universal remotes and socks come are much more handier than Xbox accessories or Manolo's which can be chewed up by your new puppy. You got a job, live within your means!

2. Take your ass to church/mosque/synagogue, or at least read your holy book...

Remember what this whole holiday thing is about. Try not to get caught up in consumer madness. If crowded malls scare you in July, then stay the hell away in December. There is a reason for all of us that this time has been deemed special. To know why makes this time seem more special for all of us.

3. Try to give time and effort, rather than buying someone off...

Here's a new one... Volunteer. There are many people that once lived a consumer capitalist's life. Some have been battered, some are homeless, some have been affected by drugs, sex or alcohol. Before you drop $399 on the new iPod video, remember that there are some folks that want to be in a warm place and watch a little TV. I'm sure there are shelters, YMCA's and Boys and Girls Clubs as well as hospitals that need an extra hand this year.

4. Go see grandma...

Or an aunt, or an uncle or something. We always tend to forget about our elders this holiday season. Not all of our elders will make it to the family dinner. There are some that have no family and because of age can remember the good times backintheday. Be a smart-ass and go sit with an old schooler this season. Listen, they might learn you something, and you might help take the edge off of what could be a lonely Christmas and New Year.

5. Give more to charity than to your got-a-job ass friends...

You loaned one of em' $500 last April and they ain't paid you back yet. I know they're your friends but... There is a child, or a church, or a movement that needs a few dollars more. A good lunch at a nice spot and a gift certificate is a great gesture for a friend. And plus time well spent is always time well spent. Somebody might buy you a drink.


In other words, take your time, enjoy the season and give of yourself more than your wallet. You can't buy happiness and you can never please people when you haven't pleased yourself first. Get out, party and try to volunteer. I'm telling you, it is so worth it to do the opposite of what corporate America wants you to do.

But that's just me...

6 comments:

TheOneandOnlyInsanely said...

Thats me too. Great post. I feel you.

I hate shopping anyway, so Christmas shopping can kiss my ass. I hope no one is expecting shit from me. Other than my love and time.

Me said...

It's never really been about the gifts with my people. If we get something, we're most thankful, but just spending time is what it's really always been about. Last year I skipped Christmas and everybody was so shocked and disappointed. Especially since they all know it's my fave holiday.

Between remodeling and moving, I am kinda tapped this year. Though I'm always down to buy socks and draws, make a dish and give by showing appreciation in other ways, I'm hoping the fact that I will be there this year with fam will be gift enough. But we shall see.

nikki said...

yup.

Honey-Libra said...

Very tru...we get caught up in the hoopla of spending money to only be in debt soon afterwards.....loved the post!

Deeds said...

Well first of all I have to say that as I was reading this post I felt a little un~rest in my spirit...and yes *honesty moment here* The Manolo's and new puppy comment struck a nerve. However, with some of this I do not agree. And that's what comments are for right?

I opened my bible and my eyes fell upon 2 Corinthians 9
and in it I read this among other things: (starting at 6-8...but feel free to read on)

6But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully.

7Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.

8And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work:

God *my father* didn't say WHAT to GIVE...he just told us to GIVE. I do agree that Christmas has become so Commercialized...but remember...They came and brought Jesus gifts of Gold and Silver...Percious Jewels and Silk...and I don't think Mary or Joseph gave any of it back and said "it's too much..."

So with that being said, if someone WANTS to work a little extra to give someone an Ipod or if someone were to splurg a little hard earned money on a pair of ridiclously exspeny shoes...It is their chioce and it is all about giving that matters...he didn't specify what to give...he just said give.

Didn't mean to blog on your blog...I just had another spin on it that's all:)

Until We Read Again:)

NameLiar said...

I agree with Dee-Dee and that goes double for me...I was thinking of unleashing the wrath of NameLiar but Dee-Dee has said enough.

Why I ought ta....oh wee!