Casualty of Capitalism

Exiled into Wilmington, Delaware by virtue of corporate layoffs. (Note: Unless otherwise stated, all photos on this blog are Copyright 2005, Michael Collins, and cannot be used without permission.)

Location: Wilmington, Delaware, United States

Graduate of University of Maryland School of Law; University of Maryland, College Park (Economics/Political Science).

Wednesday, December 15, 2004


An email I received today from my fiance read:

The name of our company CHRISTMAS party:

[redacted] 2004 Christmahanukwanzakah Party!

Give me a break.

Not surprising. I often find myself chastising myself after saying, "Merry Christmas" to someone. Having grown up in the DC area, and having worked twice on Capitol Hill, I automatically feel a great sense of guilt, just because of the possibility that someone might take offense. Drives me crazy.

In fact, last year, when a secretary at my company sent out an email informing us of the date and time of our "Christmas Party," I immediately ran into my boss' office and remarked that I couldn't believe we were have a CHRISTMAS party! It was the first one I could remember having in my professional career. Score one for the Midwest, I thought.

The removal of Christmas from Christmas is nothing new. Jay Nordlinger wrote this absurd piece a year ago, "December's C-Word":

In the workplace, "Christmas" is a faux pas, at best. One company lists its holidays thus: "New Year's Day, Presidents' Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day [yes], and December 25th." December 25th. These people could not bring themselves to utter the C-word. Christmas parties are out, and in are, of course, holiday parties, seasonal gatherings, and end-of-year celebrations. A man writes, "My law firm does a 'Christmas in April' charity event. But it's 'holiday' at Christmas! I'd like them to do a 'Christmas in April' in December for a change." One company decided to avoid naming holidays altogether: Now they just have "scheduled down days."

Nordlinger's follow-up today to this paragraph is priceless:

"Jay, I read your piece "December's C-Word," in which you wrote about my workplace, where all the holidays are called by name, except Christmas, which is referred to as 'December 25th.' This year, the situation is even more laughable. Since Christmas falls on the weekend, the page of our internal website was changed to read, 'December 25th (observed on December 24th in 2004).' What nonsense! Anyway, Merry Christmas to you."


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