Happy holidays?

22 Dec

It’s here again, that time of the year. I don’t know whether to wish everyone happy holidays, or send best wishes for your survival, emotional, spiritual, physical and mental. I’ll do both, to cover every eventuality, unless of course you voted for the government, in which case I AM NOT FEELING THE LOVE.

But more of that later. In the meantime we say love one another if you can, and if you can’t, stay away from sharp implements.

 Caloundra Xmas 2013

And here’s one of my favourite Bob Dylan songs, Forever Young. Listen to the lyrics, (which are here if you can’t hear them) they are everything No Place for Sheep wishes for everyone.

21 Responses to “Happy holidays?”

  1. 8 Degrees of Latitude December 22, 2013 at 1:17 pm #

    Merry Christmas and every good wish for the New Year. Lovely photo!


  2. Forrest Gumpp (@ForrestGumppXVI) December 22, 2013 at 2:13 pm #

    You make me feel like a fakir for having been spending nights in the knife drawer. Such, however, is my discipline that there is little risk of cutting remarks, notwithstanding the vagaries of Twitter I strive to understand.

    Thank you for the electronic page space I have been using on the ‘shitfield’ thread. I hope in its rivetingly technical way it brings some enhancement to your blog. I have feelings, too, you know.

    Good to see you having had what has the appearance of having been fun on Twitter in recent days. Have a nice Christmas, as the picture would appear to show you already are. Visit the St Bernard as often as necessary.

    Be careful of having too many TimTams. Blockages.

    Merry bloody Christmas.


  3. Elisabeth December 22, 2013 at 2:15 pm #

    May we all stay forever young, if not in body then at least in spirit. Thanks for helping to do this with your wondrous insights and beautiful writing.


  4. Catherine Manning December 22, 2013 at 5:03 pm #

    It comes around quickly, doesn’t it Jennifer?! Thanks for your interesting and insightful posts throughout the year. Much love and best wishes to you and your NPFS ‘family’. xo


  5. samjandwich December 22, 2013 at 7:17 pm #

    Thanks Jennifer, and best wishes to you too (and the GCs of course. My oh my don’t they have your genes!).

    It is a strange time of year, but all things considered there is, as one who is sitting on the balcony with earplugs in place, only one significant drawback: the cicadas!!

    xx from me.


  6. sarah toa December 23, 2013 at 2:37 am #

    Thanks Jennifer for your great posts this year. I have enjoyed them. I hope all is going well for you. Sarah


  7. Gruffbutt December 23, 2013 at 8:31 pm #

    Great photo, Jennifer.

    Best of wot Bob said, for you and your loved ones and everyone on here (maybe even the trolls when I’m in a good mood).

    Cheers (hic!)


  8. Anonymous December 23, 2013 at 10:51 pm #

    Thanks for providing the odd bit of sanity here. A secular Christmas to all.


  9. doug quixote December 24, 2013 at 8:08 am #

    Peace on earth to all persons of good will.

    As for the others, fuck ’em!



  10. hudsongodfrey December 25, 2013 at 11:54 am #

    Merry Christmas, Yuletide & Festivus for the rest of us?

    A lot is said from time to time about the history of the celebration we’re having today. There is no doubt that it honours important Christian traditions but even less that it also ties in with the essence of something older. Even the modern commercialisation of the celebrations references the figure of the Turkish Saint Nicholas of Myra (270-343AD) who perhaps surprisingly pre-dated the modern association of Jesus’ birth with the midwinter Solstice as late as 354AD. Yet even the Saint himself has recently been subject to recent controversy in America when Fox News’ Megyn Kelly insisted to the children watch that “Santa is white”. Why? Because like most of us she probably wouldn’t recognise the Turk whose generosity the modern figure of Santa commemorates.

    Then there are the changes to that figure and to the celebration, itself so completely remote from the time and culture of Bethlehem in the late Iron Age. While it is a myth that Coca Cola’s advertising machine completely reinvented Santa in their own image there’s no escaping the incorporation of several other traditions subsuming any sense of Eastern influence within the culture we recognise. The burning log and 12 days owe their significance to the Germanic midwinter rights of Yule. Carolling comes from the Slavic Koliada but perhaps along with the general party atmosphere owes something to a pact between Rome and early Christian church to keep some of the tamer aspects of their Saturnalia festivities. Your tree may be a Georgian Chichilaki, a Polish Podłaźniczka (associated with Koliada), a Scandinavian reference to Thor’s Oak, a Germanic cousin of the Guild Brotherhood’s decorated spruces, or a Festivus pole made out of aluminium beer cans. Maybe the power that entreats a kiss under the mistletoe in Scandinavian tradition has feint links with that plant’s place in Greek and Roman Mythology, but it’s more likely tied into Norse legend about the arrow that killed Baldr. Even the Christmas stocking came from somewhere to make its way into the modern gift giving legacy of Saturnalia and St Nick.

    This exhausting collection of traditions vacuumed up and melded into what predominantly had its primacy in a Northern Hemisphere winter Solstice overlaid with a religious reverence for the things all of those traditions joined in celebrating about good times with family and friends doesn’t really need explaining it needs enjoying.

    Get to it however you see fit ☺


    • doug quixote December 29, 2013 at 8:22 am #

      Season’s Greetings HG. Yes, the “Santa is white” idea is rather odd, but I doubt we can base its absurdity on Nicholas of Myra. I don’t know how many Turks you know, but the ones I know are Caucasian, ie white, or pinko-grey, as some have mockingly said.

      If the commercial interests want to make up a Father Christmas character, he (or she?) can be any colour they want. One supposes a Philippino Santa is well, Philippino. (I use them as an example because they are the most catholic nation on earth)

      That parenthetical query does raise an issue : can Santa be female? Where are the feminists demonstrating about this vital issue?



      • paul walter December 29, 2013 at 10:50 am #

        The red nose attests to the substance abuse problem and what normal man would want children sitting on his lap all day.


      • hudsongodfrey December 29, 2013 at 12:33 pm #

        Good point.

        I’ve seen women dressed as Santa if you could call a white fur trimmed red bikini a Santa suit?

        We do seem to have some double standards about things don’t we!


        • paul walter December 29, 2013 at 12:54 pm #

          Yes, That is more my idea of xmass.
          A curvy little elvette in a white fur-trimmed red ‘kini…or not!


          • hudsongodfrey December 29, 2013 at 1:10 pm #

            I get that it adds a whole new meaning to filling xmas stockings etc…. but I hope you also realise that wasn’t my actual meaning.

            If we have to choose between whether Santa is meant to be either an endorsement of White Anglo Saxon Protestant values or Sexism then maybe we’d better turn our attentions elsewhere and wish youse all a Happy New Year.


            • paul walter December 29, 2013 at 7:32 pm #

              and you..and the others who contribute, including the landlady, most of all..


  11. paul walter December 29, 2013 at 1:45 am #

    Each year has its own quirks. Am older and without close family, so Christmas means some thing different to me to what it means to many others and to what it meant to me when i was younger.
    How does it work?
    The yawnng gap berween a southern hemisphere Chtistmas and a northern one struck me as some thing worth remarking to US FB friends,preoccupied with snow falls and log fires, so I ,emtioned the heatwave in Adelaide last week.
    But Xmass is a happy time. about beginnings as wellas endings,as HG points out and its motif is the birth of a baby, so it is more popular than fin de siecle Easter or Good Fiday, where people are forced to look at themselves, against the commitment and altruism of others and learn that happy times can end in tears.
    To Jennifer and the rest I wish a happy year upcoming. hope you all find it fulfilling,.


  12. pcmazwrupp@gmail.com March 13, 2014 at 8:14 am #

    I’m interested in writing my own music, and have a working knowledge of the basics in terms of sheet music and the like. But what I need is a computer program that will allow me to create music without relying on using a MIDI keyboard. While I’d love to have access to electronic instruments like that, my computer space is already cramped and there’s just no room for it. Freeware is always nice, but I’m willing to spend some cash if I have to..


  13. pcmazwrupp@gmail.com March 13, 2014 at 8:15 am #

    You don’t “download” files to powerpoint. You import them to powerpoint. Download means to transfer data over a network to a computer. So in powerpoint if you don’t see “download” in the File or Edit or Options or any other menu, that’s why. First you download from the net your midi files, and then you open Powerpoint and nav to the import files option.


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