I came across a couple Christmas related videos that really got my attention. One was a collection (and song) of “deprived” people tweeting about not getting the gifts they wanted for Christmas. It’s one of the clear effects of our culture becoming more entitled and narcissistic, turning into Veruca Salt from Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory. It’s actually really interesting and there’s a great book called “The Narcissism Epidemic” that really gets into what’s going on and might be done about it.
Here is the “WTF?! I Wanted An iPhone!!! Song”:
The other video that made me pause was from an article about a town in China where old Christmas lights are recycled. They recycle 20 thousand pounds of lights a year:
I’m glad they’re recycling all of those old lights. I felt curious about what else is being thrown out for the sake of Christmas, so I googled it. An interesting page of statistics came back: http://www.recycleworks.org/resident/holiday_facts.html. Some of the crazy figures include: 1 million tons of additional waste per week during the holiday season, 50 million Christmas trees are purchased and 30 million go to the landfill. The page also has a section that says “70% of Americans would welcome less emphasis on gift giving and spending.”
I’m definitely part of that 70% and unfortunately, I’ve made my contribution to the other statistics as well. What would it look like to take the materialism and entitlement out of Christmas? Maybe it would be less stressful. Maybe we’d spend more time with our families and less time working to pay those bills. Maybe we’d see the true gift we all have is time.