Monday, December 02, 2013

Ok, tell us about your Hanukkah / Thanksgiving Frankenstein holiday

I've observed three types of reactions to the once-in-a-lifetime confluence of the Great American Holiday and the Most Overrated Jewish Holiday:

Some Jews were enthusiastic. These fusion-minded Jews bought the pet- rock Menurky and wished each other non-ironic Gobble Tovs, seemingly unaware that the syncretism was sponsored mostly by vendors and lifestyle editors in search of a fad.

Others were blaseI count myself as part of this crowd. Getting excited about the Hanukkah-Turkey-day mash-up seemed unnecessary.This is because getting excited about either holiday seems unnecessary. A turkey dinner just isn't that special. The one we ate was delicious, and we enjoyed the company of dear friends, but the meal was no better or worse than 90 percent of our weekly shabbos dinners. And Chanukah is the least and the smallest of our feasts. Aside for a few minutes for hallel at the beginning of the day and a few minutes for candles at the end, the eight days of Hanukah are just like any other. Combining the two holidays is a curiosity and a convenience - some Jews took advantage of the opportunity to make their family  Hanuka parties on Thanksgiving - but I don't cartwheel over curiosities and  conveniences.

And then we have the haters. Allison Benedict at Slate appointed herself high priest of this tribe announcing that "The portmanteau holiday is bad for Jews and bad for America". Why? Apparently because she's an awful parent who lacks confidence in her own ability to explain to her children that they won't be getting presents on Thanksgiving forever more. Her stupid solution was to skip Hanukkah last Thursday.
I like how if you miss one night, there’s always another. Let’s skip Thursday.
It didn't occur to her that she could skip the presents instead. She also seems unaware that Passover and Easter coincide almost every year,
Oh, God: Easover? Passeaster? 
so dunce points all around .

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