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Give Scrooge a Break - The Thin Edge of Dignity


By Dick Weinman

Now that Christmas has passed, and all the Auto Manufacturers, Mattress Outlets, Walmarts/Targets/ Macys, and every brick&mortar storefront in your hometown, - let’s not forget Amazon - are changing their pane-glass displays to the February perennial, Hearts&Flowers&Chocolates, while planning for Presidents Day. What sorrow George and Abe must feel to be conflated into a single great-for-business, days-without-school-ski-trip holiday!

So, before plans are laid for the next consumer dash, let’s mull over the past business bonanza: Chestnuts roasting on an open fire…./Yuletide carols being sung by a choir – and sung and sung and sung by kid carolers, middle school carolers, high school carolers, independent college kid carolers, sorority and fraternity carolers, secular adult carolers, church member adult carolers, sing-along carolers – Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu caro.. . . OOPS – I got carried away. As a resident of an Assisted Living Facility, I am overcome by the good-better-best cheer of this musical season


I’m basically a kindly person - And look at the mensch ole’ Ebenezer turned out to be.

I’ve just returned from Christmas vacation at my daughter’s house, where the stockings were hung by the gas-driven fireplace, the Noble fir was strung with glass decorations from our family’s past – large, round glass balls engraved with a ho-hoing pot-bellied Santa, “Pandora’s continuous Christmas music filling the house 24/7 – even the cats and dog got Christmas presents. And my teenage granddaughters still believe there is a Santa Claus!

I even loaned my professional voice to a reading of Clement Moore’s never-to-be-forgotten Christmas Eve story – Twas the night before Christmas….etc.etc.etc. ( See the Facebook post.)

In short, even though, year after year as a forced resident in Long Term Care, I tire of absorbing the continual kaleidoscopic of sounds that bind Western Christian - and Reform Jews - at Christmas time. (Sometimes there’s a co-existing Chanukah – my family had both a Christmas tree with flickering colored bulbs and a candle-lit Menorah.) I soak in the spiritual, secular, classical, guitar, commercial, hip-hop, jazz, bossa nova, Alvin and the chipmunks, and all other forms of Christmas carols and songs.

So I plead – at this time of love and good will – don’t be too hard on us scrooges; after all, the original Scrooge may not have been enamored of Christmas carols – but even Tiny Tim blessed him. And we wouldn’t have had him around if it wasn’t for A Christmas Carol.


Note: Dick Weinman blogs for AARP Oregon twice monthly on life in an assisted living facility. 

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