when i was a kid, the worst night of the year was christmas night. worst day was by far the 26th of december. they both sucked cause there was no more season left. it was over. people were tired of gifts, tired of eating, tired of family. it was like all joy was sucked out of the holiday and people were ready to move on to new year’s. now that i’m half grown up, it’s sad to think about. the reason people are sad is that the anticipation is over. nobody wants to take down decorations and think about getting a gym membership. nobody is thinking about Jesus on christmas night. and it’s His night! this whole day is about celebrating the birth of Christ Incarnate and people are bummed they don’t get to look forward to anything anymore. it’s a sad thing. i wish my focus was more on Jesus and His birth than on worrying about getting all my gifts wrapped and all the other stuff. this is a special time of year, because of the anticipation, the excitement of being with family, of feeling more love in our society than normal, but especially because of God’s gift to us, and i wish my excitement was a result of that; God’s great gift to us. one of my favorite christmas songs is O Holy Night. favorite line:
“Long lay the world in sin and error pining, till He appeared, and the soul felt its worth.” i want to feel that worth again through christmas, through His birth. such a touching line. i miss real christmas.
running with this christmas theme, sufjan stevens has one of the most incredible christmas albums i’ve ever heard. check it out here. from what i gathered, for like four or five years, he basically made a new mixtape of christmas songs each christmas for his friends and family and gave them away as gifts. how cool is that. a few simple mixtapes that become a terrific (and long) christmas album. he covers mostly classic christmas hymns (joy to the world, hark the herald angels sing, etc.), a few originals (get behind me santa! among others, how clever is that?), and a few non-christmas themed songs (amazing grace, come thou fount of every blessing, etc.). such interesting takes on mostly overdone songs. he makes all these old songs feel new and heartbreaking. so good. it’s absolutely worth the fifteen dollars on itunes.
and this is effectively the end of christmas 2007 for me. i’m going to bed and in the morning i redirect all thoughts and efforts towards getting completely ready for spain. daunting. i have shoes, jeans, umbrella, voltage converter, slippers, and all sorts of other things to buy that i haven’t even thought of yet. i also just realized the fact that tomorrow is the 26th of december is going to make everything less efficient…all of the kansas city metro area will be out returning crappy gifts. that’s a shame.