Bah, Hum--no, wait--no, well, maybe Bah Humbug after all.
The thing is, though, I'm not feeling particularly Humbug-ish this time around. Even though, with no late-November Thanksgiving to mark off the start of Christmas season, people up here seem to start with the trees and the decorations and the carols in stores just a few days after Halloween. Even though the Mermaid Girl has been prancing around the house practicing "Reindeer Rock," the song-and-dance routine her class is working up for the Christmas (not holiday, but Christmas) concert, and my workplace doesn't even make any gesture toward calling the shindig they're throwing next weekend a "holiday party" rather than a "Christmas party." Even though when I picked her up from school today I saw that her whole class had done Remembrance Day paintings featuring a hill, a field of poppies, and a BIG CROSS marking a grave (apparently, that's the standard iconic imagery for Remembrance Day: poppies, field, cross. It was kind of startling, though.)
It just hasn't been bugging me that much. Go figure.
I did check in with the principal way back in September about December holiday celebrations, and she told me with some pride that there are kids of many different religions at MG's new Cool Artsy School (and I believe it--even though we're out in the burbs, it's way way more ethnically diverse than the population at her old school in Seattle), and they do a play every year, and last year the play was about all the *different* holidays people celebrate at this time of year. "Too bad you weren't here then," she concluded; "this year the play is going to be about Santa."
And I volunteered again to do a Chanukah Presentation for MG's class. "I don't think she'll want you to," my girl said, and I wasn't so certain either; this teacher seems to dismiss some pretty innocuous suggestions with a "that's just not the way we usually do it." (NB: neither the Renaissance Woman nor I are crazy about this teacher overall as a person, but as MG seems to be learning just fine from her, and has volunteered multiple times how much she likes her, we haven't made a point of it.)
But I talked with the teacher after school today and she's just fine with it, and even volunteered the use of a basket of dreidels someone gave her a while ago, that she wasn't sure how to use.
I think I actually like how, even though Canada has an official, government-sponsored policy supporting and celebrating multiculturalism, it doesn't--
Wait, stop the presses! I was going to go on to say that Canada doesn't make any pretense of separating church and state as the U.S. ostensibly does, since as part of the Commonwealth it has an official state religion (Church of England, baby!) but when I went to look it up I found that apparently such is not the case (well, at least not according to that great arbiter of all knowledge, Wikipedia).
Now what am I going to do? I was just fine with being a stranger in a strange land, but it looks like it's the same old, same old, here. Just with even less window dressing--well, more literal window dressing at this time of year, but fewer figurative token nods towards the concept that some people might, you know, not celebrate Christmas.
Sheesh. Now I'm confused.
Even so, somehow it's hard for me to get worked up about it this year.
Okay; as you were.