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Friday, December 24, 2010

A Nice Jewish Girl Celebrates Christmas

And why not?  The secular aspects of the season have become deeply ingrained in our American tradition.  It's part of our communal heritage.

Not to mention, I have plenty of company:  the most famous Christmas songs were written by Jewish men -- Irving Berlin wrote "White Christmas" and Mel Torme wrote "The Christmas Song".  Barbra Streisand, Neil Sedaka, Kenny G.  and (Lord help us) Neil Diamond have all recorded Christmas albums.  Barry Manilow recorded THREE Christmas albums.  Allan Sherman recorded one of the funniest Christmas songs ever.   And Phil Spector produced one of the best-selling Christmas albums of all time.

I could go on and on in this vein....but Adam Sandler did it better....

No, Christmas is not "my" holiday, you won't find me at Midnight Mass.  But the ideals of the holiday -- peace on Earth, good will towards man, charity, benevolence, altruism, friendship, generosity, kindness, compassion -- are the ideals good people of all faiths advocate and support.  The gathering of friends and family is something to be cherished.  It's no wonder that many religions and ethnic groups celebrate joyous holidays at this, the darkest time of the year, as we grow closer to those around us and seek to banish the darkness from our lives...

So you will find me at a friend's house tonight, basking in the glow of her Christmas tree and enjoying a festive meal.  And tomorrow, the fulfillment of a stereotype -- going to the movies and out for Chinese food (thank you, Justice Kagan!).

So let me wish you all the joys of the season.  Happy holidays -- Christmas, Chanuka, Kwanzaa, Festivus or whatever you choose to celebrate -- and a happy and healthy New Year to one and all.

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