Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas. The Epitome of Time and Energy Loss Related to Consumerism.

We all have our own ways to celebrate or cope, especially after Thanksgiving passes by and we head to the Christmas Season. Along with Santa, Christmas brings lights, tripping, fantastic, customs, gatherings and tidings of joy.

Perception is key, but this time of year can be fun. TTOY can be considered magical, fanciful and delightful complete with carriage rides through the city. People do find themselves affected in some manner around this recognized "holiday season" but again, these affects can be uplifting and inclusive or can manifest as melancholy feelings and induce separation. With the latter pair comes confusion. The former allows good connections, positive interactions and is life affirming.

Keep it in perspective, but seriously, ask a real question during this holiday season: Did you actually have to spend all that money on stuff? Largely for people that probably don't really need that particular stuff to survive? What else could that time, energy, money and emotion have produced?

Some of it is legit because, yes, the holidays bring people together. The holidays' existence and acknowledgment can allow for deep personal meaning to be ascribed to an object, event, person or string of words. Very special, real and intimate things, all of them. Things that are and will become important. This deep personal meaning, shared or solitary, can be found in certain physical objects, memories, photos or even a scent or glance if it is embraced as it comes along.

Fingers, guitar fretboard, chord.
Music Flows From Her Fingers.

I think the true Christmas Season begins when the malls start piping in holiday music.

We breathe in the familiar scent and we allow ourselves to see the connection and feel the meaning. In this instance our nose facilitates the deja vu. We are right back somewhere, sometime and with someone. After all, being at the place the memory was formed makes us a participant in the creation due to the joining of two souls. Not a baby this time, but a memory was created. An image or set of images (physical or not) that can be recalled to enjoy the time again.

Say I planted a tree with a friend in my front yard. We took pictures and invited people over to help us figure out what kind of tree it is. People came and saw the tree but we didn't get its name. The people coming by, the pictures we took and the continued existence of the tree are all physical proofs that the interplay between my friend and I (and this tree) happened. Two people dug a hole and planted a tree. Other people not only saw us dig and plant, but years later people walk by the tree and acknowledge the tree. If we had not planted that tree no one/nothing else would get to interact nor enjoy it in any fashion. Still though, dogs pee on the tree even as birds perch on the tree. It is a good tree. 

My friend and I form memories of the planting in our own ways for recollection purposes, however the actual planting of and existence of the tree is never in doubt. The memories are special because of the pure connection found when matching energies exist. Our time together was special, therefore it is remembered as such. Meanings are attached to the digging, the tree, the person, the lawn, the house, the street, the day of the year...Each attachment is as deep, vast and colorful as it is tangible to the individual.

There is meaning in all we do. How we spend our time is the ultimate measure of our involvement in the project at hand, whether it be spending time with a person, going out, cleaning up, calling mom, etc. The energies we create through our actions and mannerisms speak very loudly as ultimately our true intentions will shine through. Eye contact, active listening, warm and welcoming body language, honest and thought out responses; all these things show a bit about intent. Genuine attentiveness and warmth can not be falsely achieved and will be called out by even the youngest of children. This genuineness also helps you become a good gift giver if you pay enough attention and let the energy in.

Is a handwritten note more powerful than a Tyrannosaurus Rex?   

On Xmas eve I was standing in line at CVS in Eastown waiting to pay for my purchases. I was not christmas shopping, but it was one of the very few places open. I was just picking up a few overpriced items (I am not innocent in all this, I do realize that) and noticed a woman holding two colorful, plastic and cheaply made dinosaurs. In that instant I was struck by the thought of her taking these toys home, removing the price tags, wrapping them in tissue, dropping them in a stocking, and ultimately being somehow pleased that her $7.92 spent will provide the "gift's" recipient five minutes of "something" during the unveiling on xmas a.m proper. Will these dinosaurs convey the message she is attempting to convey? One hopes so.

Of the many outcomes possible after the dinosaurs officially change hands, we hope it is pure joy and elation. Perfect gifts for the perfect kid(s). Good for the giver and receiver; I mean who doesn't love to hang with a T-Rex from time to time? These toys may match the theme of the kid's room or something else positive and logical. Maybe not. If it is a well themed gift, then that is an out for her, a partial escape, but still she did not leave unscarred.

Will the toys be acknowledged after the newness and shiny colors wear thin? Might they be pushed in a corner? Might they collect dust and sit ignored for years? Might they become a quick afterthought in the midst of all the gift wrapped stimuli? Will the child be able to associate the gift with the giver? It may not mean anything now, but memories remain. Memories shape us. Memories soothe us.

I submit that this woman's money, time, efforts and energy should have resulted in a much more meaningful gift. A much more honest representation of her acknowledgement that a token is necessary to convey her message.

Her time spent getting to CVS, searching the aisles for a suitable gift for its intended recipient, waiting in line to pay, paying, potentially taking the steps I outlined above, lions and tigers and bears, oh my...phew, could amount to a block of time as great as a couple hours. 120 minutes. 

Purchasing something other than non-domestic made riff-raff-disposable-re-gifting tchotchkes would be a great start. Taking a few moments to tune in and recognize the perfect thing when it shows itself. A hand written note, teddy bear or anything as long as it is not those goddamned dinosaurs and the waste they represent. Her time, her money, her time spent earning the money she spent, gas, etc.

Are we all not partially at fault since the butterfly's wings flap as we exhale into the night?

What gift would best convey endearment, age no matter? 

Is it an endearment of sorts you are trying to communicate? Through one of your love languages? 

Is it a color? A word? A symbol of something else? A truth? A message?

Passing along information in an attempt to lift some veils and expose half truths? 

Trying to convey your Love through the passing along of material things can get convoluted quickly. It is similar to the attempt of texting huge thoughts, inflections or silly voices. Potentially lost in translation and easily confused. Be careful and invest yourself accordingly. 

An object that you can pass the message into and trust it says everything you wish to pass along? Can you find that gift? 

When tongue tied and twisted how are you able to see a person through their fog? Through your own fogs? What then do you gift them?

Whatever you believe, don't be shy with it. 

Thanks for reading. Enjoy the week.


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