Saturday, December 23, 2006

Festivus and the Jedi

Today, 23 December, is Festivus, which is a festival for the rest of us. I guess "the rest of us" being those who don't subscribe to the religious backgrounds to other festivals.

I'm no believer in God and Christ being His son and all that, as you well know. That said, I absolutely abhor these "Happy Holidays" platitudes for fear of offending non-Christians. Christmas is a Christian celebration (albeit one set within the calendar at around the same time as a pre-existing pagan celebration), so will people just shut the fuck up with all that PC bullshit. (Not you, dear reader, naturally.)

Still, Festivus is the way to go, I think. As a longtime Seinfeld fan, I think the time has come for me to fully embrace Festivus. Indeed, I need to try to find an aluminium pole today. That may prove tricky at such short notice, so Tree Cool will certainly see us through this year's celebrations.

But I need to make sure that Festivus sits okay with my actual religion. Yes, I am one of the 390,000 dorks who listed their religion as "Jedi" on the last census of England and Wales. Despite that, I'm pretty much in the dark when it comes to what festivals are celebrated by us Jedis. So if anyone could shed some light, that would be most useful.

And in the meantime, head on over to Such As They Are for my latest review.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

According to my son, who passed his Jedi Master exam last year, Jedi can celebrate festivals. Because they have shed all material and emotional attachments, they are free to participate in any and all fesitvals. Enjoy all this season has to offer!

23 December, 2006 14:05  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

well I feel a jedi would as pickled olive says roll with any and all celebrations of life and family. I see one leaning against the back wall of a pageant watching, smiling, and just glad to see the galaxy giving, receiving, and supporting the economy. I see a jedi as protector of the right to celebrate what ever and it is almost fitting that he doesnt believe any of the religions celebrated. I think a jedi if he is to maintain order in a vast galaxy full of different religions then has to remain neutral with no bias except that of the force. Anger, fear, and jealousy are you Satans my friend. For they lead down a path that I we cannot follow.(I dont know what I was shoveling in this post but I had fun spewing)

23 December, 2006 15:13  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hahaha... i love that you put jedi... that's awesome!

and i guess i'll say "Merry Festivus!" to you... and i'd love to add to the jedi thing, but i think olives and shea said it all

(although, i'm sure when adam stops by, he'll have loads to say on the subject)

23 December, 2006 15:32  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is it Festivus already!?

Damn...this holiday really sneaks up on you doesn't it? ;)


23 December, 2006 16:15  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love how my appearance was heralded by Martha - hah, as if I was born for this comment.

Anyway, if I may shed a little light on the subject for you - Jedi spend their holiday in a way not too different from the way we celebrate our respective yuletide times.

It all starts with a trip to the Jedi Temple where a Festivus play takes place in the main counsel chamber. It's a morality tale of a baby who is born of virginial birth - a young child named Anakin Skywalker who grows to change the universe. The play covers his fall into darkness and temptation and his triumphant return to redemption.

Then it's off to Hoth for the annual snowman building competition. Last year's winners, the Mos Espa Rodian Twins Tweedo and Freego, built a life-size replica of a Bantha. (For those who aren't Star Wars nerds, a bantha is the large horned creature the Sand People ride)

Don't forget the podraces on Sullust or the speeder bike jousting competitions on Utapau and Geonosis.

The night ends with each respective jedi family unit going into their dwellings, which is devoid of possessions (which we know leads to Greed, which leads to anger, which leads to hate which leads to festivus suffering)

Padawans who are to achieve the title of Knight get their ceremonial braid cut off, while younglings receive a training crystal for their first lightsaber - it's quite a joyous event.

While I'm not a warrior for a galaxy far, far away I will be celebrating my Christmas by watching on six Star Wars films at home - it's typically a tradition this time of year for us to watch all of them. Last year we added the Indiana Jones trilogy, this year it will be LOTR. Quite a lot of movie watching...

Anyway, may the force be with you?

23 December, 2006 16:40  
Blogger * (asterisk) said...

Olives: Thank your son on my behalf! That sounds good to me ;-)

Shea: Sounds like my kind of spew you're gushing! Good job. Roll with them all, I will.

Martha: Yes, Merry Festivus to us all! It was clear that Adam would have something useful to add, being the keeper of all things Star Wars.

Steve: I know, it's quick as a flash, ain't it?

Adam: Great to be born for something, it is. The Festivus play sounds interesting! I love the bit where you go, "For those who aren't Star Wars nerds, a bantha is the large horned creature the Sand People ride". That's really helped so many people, I'm sure! For those who didn't get what Sand People are, he means Tusken Raiders. That should have cleared that up now. I think the Force will be with me, even though it's unlikely I'll watch any of the films over Christmas. I still have never seen half of Episode II and all of Episode III, even tho' I have the DVDs. Watch them soon I will.

23 December, 2006 17:17  
Blogger Gardenia said...

OH, these comments are great.

I dropped by to say the dreaded words - but now will say Happy Festivus, and may there be peace in the galaxies!

23 December, 2006 17:19  
Blogger apositivepessimist said...

The only thing I am religious about (*) is breathing, for the life of me I can not get into that “happy holidays” I will no doubt continue to wish people a Merry Christmas [although I am liking this Festivus crap so I may chop and change with that] and if I offend someone by wishing them a Merry Chrissy well I guess they are just gunna haftah suck it on up.

So a Merry Christmas/Festivus to You, Red and your families (*).

23 December, 2006 23:50  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I know nothing of this Jedi religion. Hell i was catholic for like... 17 years. and i know nothing about that. :p i think the happiest religion i ever tried was pagan.

so... now i shall press mine onto you.

Merry YULE!


its not really mine. im lost.

24 December, 2006 04:59  
Blogger * (asterisk) said...

Gardenia: Thank you! There are some cool comments, aren't there?!

APP: I'm big on breathing too. Do it religiously. Except sometimes when I'm asleep. That's the apnoea, I guess. Happy Christmas to you and yours too.

Yas: I hope yule have a great Christmas too! (Aren't we all a little lost when it comes to belief and faith?)

24 December, 2006 11:11  
Anonymous candyminx said...

Ha ha!

That's so funny. I didn't know that saying Happy Holidays was a hassle. I think I probably started the phase of saying happy holidays. I was wondering what your comment about holidays, just now, meant because I was out all day yesterday and hadn't made it to your blog yet.

I've said it for so long I don't remember not saying it.

I wasn't raised Christian, so the holiday time is something I try to go out of my way to associate with Christians, it has always been a pagan holiday I grew up with.

I say Happy christmas too lots of times, I don't feel or notice a difference. I have so many friends that are Jewish or outside of being raised Catholic I have always said something along the lines of "hope you enjoy your days off".

I'm laughing because it's so NOT pc to say happy holidays. It's like actually the very boring opposite. It means you just never associated yourself with Christianity during the winter festival. One of my best freinds parents were Jehovah Witnesses, which is a north American faction in contemproary Christianity. They didn't celebrate birthdays or Christimas. Her husband is Persian and an atheist, his family wouldn't have clue what to do in a church or with a Christmas tree. They sleep all day on the 25th, tired from their jobs, heh heh.

So really, I don't know exactly when but during my winter festival that my peoples have been celebrating for thousands of years...someone woke up one day and started saying "happy Christmas".

I have never said happy holidays because I was worried about offending Christians, and I invented the platitude. I say happy holidays because no one religion is the boss of me.


Hey, in the meantime, happy Christmas and have some good days off work!!!

Much love,

24 December, 2006 11:48  
Anonymous candyminx said...

p.s. I forgot about the episode with does make a lot of sense. And I heard about the Jedi's...Harpers had an article about them a couple years ago....don't remember if it mentioned their celebrations...

24 December, 2006 11:50  
Blogger Aidan said...


Ugh, that's awful. I'll try to think of something better.
In the meantime - have yourself a very merry little Festivus, enjoy!

24 December, 2006 15:19  

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