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December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas baby, you sure do treat me right
Otis Redding

Merry Christmas Christmas eve.
Work started out hellacious but ended up being only creepy.Action Comics
Waiting for my friend to arrive. Thousand mile drive. She's bringing 2 dogs. Big adventure for them. They've never been anywhere before.
Big adventure for her too. She hasn't been as many places as she could have been.
I loaded up the iPod with a clashing mix of Christmas music (my kind of Christmas music) old stuff and new. When I walked to work the melange suddenly worked and I remembered those days when the car radio was my friend. The warped mixture of CHristmas music, garage and rock made sense and made me nostalgic for those times when cruising Tommy's Hamburgers and talking about the Christmas surf made sense and all while the radio played our changing soundtrack.
The wonder of Christmas was long passed but there were still dreams of a new surf board, speakers for the car stereo, surprises galore, and maybe there was still some wonder. I remember sitting silent in the car with my buddies while we listened to the Bobs, The Trashmen, Chuck Berry and the Beach Boys all singing Christmas tunes mixed in with the latest top 40. I remembered that it felt good because the music and the guys were all friends that made the time of year something more.
Christmas eve.
I'm actually off Christmas Day, not with pay of course. My Christmas bonus was twenty bucks and a scratch off lottery ticket . . . couldn't give you Christmas Day off with pay. "A poor excuse for picking a man's pocket every December the twenty fifth!"
Shows you how much I'm worth to the company. This isn't based on actual dollars or actual worth Santa Claus just their perception which there's plenty of evidence is devious, convoluted and untrustworthy.
So I'm waiting for my friend to finish her big adventure drive with two big dogs who are bewildered at best. And, while I was walking home from work, I was thinking about Christmas and the Jesus thing.
I know some people like to think I'm very spiritual and full of faith. Which seems odd to me because they're basing that on the fact that I believe in very little. I believe more in people than anything else. I was raised Catholic and one thing that is still true, once you're a catholic you are always a catholic. I've heard guys described as Catholic Bhuddists and even Catholic atheists. But being Catholic it is always what defines you. It's a pleasurable guilt thing.
So I guess my religious beliefs would be a bit of Catholic Pantheist Tao Swedenborgainism sort of thing. Which is a lot of words that don't add up to much and that is pretty much about how I feel about most religions.
This doesn't mean that I think anyone should be constricted in their beliefs. Even those whacky Captain Marvel scientology guys have that right. If they find peace in a hack failed sci-fi writers double talk that's cool by me.
My big problem with those guys is their deceptive practices and the nasty co-opting of the rapture. I don't think anyone has the right to do twisted things to other people because the world is going to end soon and because I've said the right words or read the right book all these bastards are going to die while I get spirited away by either angels or space ships.
I don't like the rapture being used to justify being a jerk, or to excuse deceiving people for their own good. Other than that what you believe is always cool by me. Just don't mess with the waves and the rocks, the reefs and the forests.
Charles Dodgson once wrote a letter to a friend who had turned agnostic and was starting to consider himself an atheist. Dodgson said some cool things about how his friends beliefs would not condemn him to hell or anything that retaliatory. But he wanted to convince him of the divinity of Jesus Christ because Dodgson seriously believed that believing in Christ would make his friend's life more pleasant and enjoyable.
These were a couple of Oxford Don's exchanging letters so a big part of the discourse was based around a whole lot of scholarly religioso stuff that escapes my interest. But there was one argument in Dodgson's letters that I found compelling and simple.
Dodgson proposed that for over 1800 years various groups and governments had attempted to emphatically disprove the existence of Christ as the Messiah and they had failed.
The Three Kings I liked that. I don't care much for anyone asking me to have blind faith, or compelling you to have faith because you needed it to believe. Too cyclical an argument for me.
The idea that the Romans of the time had the opportunity and the motive to disprove that Christ had risen from the grave and could not does resonate some. That the Christians bedeviled and eventually usurped the Roman empire despite brutal Roman oppression and constant attempts to malign and discredit Christ but they couldn't is a pretty decent argument all the way around.
I mean why couldn't they produce a couple of guys to say, "Hey, we saw Joe and Lou open up Christ's grave and carry the body out!"
It would have benefited the Romans greatly and put a cabosh on the whole thing. When those guys Mark and Matthew were writing the gospels and stuff why didn't the Romans pull out a guy to say,Donald Duck "He didn't walk on water! There's a sandbar on that sea. Anybody could have walked across it."
And on and on. It Christmas so my thoughts drift towards Christ but I think the same argument applies to Bhudda and Mohammed and Moses and most divinities.
I like that there are people out there that we consider divine. And all those divinities started out as people. People who believed in something and wanted to help others.
Its kind of cool. The kind of cool I like.

So it will be hours until my friend arrives all safe and loud and raucous, I hope. The dogs will have to reacquaint themselves and they'll be plenty of tussling and fighting, which spells a pretty exciting and Merry Christmas for me.
I hope all of you have a Merry Christmas. I'm certain its allowed. My thoughts are with you. Even if it feels like I'm ignoring you, I'm not. I just can't do as much as I used to do.
Merry Christmas.

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