Amblin' Alameda: Sagittarian Problems

Amblin' Alameda: Sagittarian Problems

Morton Chalfy

Another year’s milestone passed for me last week as I added another birthday to the mounting tally. It is not easy being a December child as one’s birthday is inevitably subsumed in the greater frenzy of Christmas. Mine is not so bad, coming as it does toward the start of the month and compared to my daughter’s, who was born on the 26th, it is really small potatoes. All December babies suffer a little but that is insult to injury.

December brings such a flood of messages and emotions from our interlocking cultures that one scarcely knows how to comport oneself properly. It is the very heart and soul of consumerism and we are under siege by the advertisers. We are also treated to the countdowns, Last Day for mail to arrive on time, Last Day to get this or that unbelievable deal, Last Day before Christmas and Last Day of the Year. This year, if the extreme interpretations of the Mayan Calendar are to be believed, it may simply be the Last Day.

Surprising how many people wouldn’t mind. Life is work, and for some it’s hard labor and no reward except more of the same. The contrast in the city of the excited, happy, harassed shoppers and the forlorn homeless begging for handouts is extreme. For some it elicits guilt and spare change given, for others it elicits practically nothing. At the end of this season devoted to loving and giving the scorecard is the sum total of retail purchases and the state of the stock market.

December is also the month of Hanukkah. My birth took place, in the vernacular, “on the second candle” and this year it fell on the “first candle.” Traditionally one receives a small gift on each day of the holiday and perhaps one extra pair of socks if your birthday happens in that week.

Through the modern magic of Skype and Facebook, December is the month of watching the family’s children experience the holidays and recharging our spirits with their innocent delight and wonder and occasional untrammeled squeals of glee. This time of the year we need to keep looking to the children for our cues and appreciate the renewal of the old ideas of sharing joy and optimism and hope for the future.

December, fraught for Sagittarians, meaningful for everyone.

Comments

Submitted by Kristen Hanlon on Thu, Dec 20, 2012

As a fellow Sagittarian, I agree with this! I've made peace with December as an adult, but as a kid I was envious of my friends with non-holiday birthdays.