I wanted to get a thought out there, grounded neither in ERISA nor pop culture but, rather, grounded in the Holiday spirit.* Silly? Sure, but - what the heck?
So there's Hanukhah, which starts off the Holiday Season, and Christmas, which ends it. And through it all, if things go right, there's a wondrous dusting of snow.
Why, though, should Hanukhah and Christmas compete for our attention? Shouldn't there be a single and joyous Judeo-Christian holiday that brings it, and us, together?
Well, here it is. It starts with the first day of Hanukhah, and extends all the way through Christmas day. It's called Snohanumas, and its name is comprised of "sno" for the festive beauty that snow brings to the Season, "han" for Hanukhah to signify its onset and "mas" for Christmas to mark its end.
Why shouldn't we get to celebrate and honor all of the elements of this wonderful time? Isn't the Hanukhah-through-Christmas season really what we indeed now have anyway? In recognition of this development, I present the following simple four-step Snohanumas Manifesto:
1. The menorah is displayed throughout the Snohanumas season. On at least one day during the eight days of Hanukhah, the candles of the menorah are to be lit. The Shamash candle (the center candle on some menorahs; the end candle on some others) should, most preferably, be used to light the others. Presents are given.
2. A Christmas tree is displayed throughout the Snohanumas season. Presents are placed under the tree on Christmas eve, and opened Christmas morning. At least one visit to Santa during the season is required.
3. The symbol for Snohanumas is the snowflake. Snowflakes are to adorn the portion of the house decorated to celebrate Snohanumas, and may be used to adorn the exterior of the house. Lights inside the home are required; lights outside the home are optional.
4. The mascot for the holiday is Frosty. He's happy, jolly and, of course, made of snow. He's not particularly Jewish or Christian (his close association with Santa is purely mythical), leaving him perfectly suited to lead the Holiday. You're permitted to sing "Frosty the Snowman" as often as you like, and each year a new Frosty of some type (toy, statue, candle, etc.) is to be brought into the home.
So, put on your secular (or quasi-secular) hats, and give your kids all of the elements of this wonderful Holiday season. Your children will have a glint in their eyes and a smile on their face, and, hopefully, so will you - nothing could make Frosty happier!
A Happy and Merry Snohanumas to you all!!
* . . . although, as to pop culture, clearly informed by the O'Keefe creation bestowed upon us by Seinfeld (Festivus! (for the rest of us)).