Tuesday, December 08, 2009
Don't Blame The Jews
I experienced a bit of misplaced Antisemitism today at work, so I'd like to set the record straight and state that I am not Jewish. I did, however, live with a Jewish family for one year and I can attest that they are wonderful people who do not wish to spoil anyone's Christmas.
The person you should be mad at is me, not the Jews -and even I don't hate Christmas, I just hate everything associated with it, including the music-especially the 'novelty' songs, as we shall see.
Have I declared War on Christmas? Not bloody likely, it is more like an insurgency ...the odds are overwhelmingly on the side of Christmas, so the best tactics involve a combination of stealth raids and surprise attacks. Take this morning for example:
I was already in a foul mood from being passed over for my old job- a much higher-paying position that was given to a new hire who was deemed to be "more qualified", which is total horseshit- I was snubbed because I make people uncomfortable and not many people like me or enjoy my company...their loss, not my problem.
Anyway, I was given the onerous task of photocopying endless box-loads of odd-sized documents, all of which were creased, folded and/or stapled, meaning each paper had to be placed on the glass individually, one at at time. The copier is smack-dab in the middle of the office traffic and the chaos around me made the simple task seem very complex. It was difficult to think, much less act.
My first thought was: At least I have a job.
I stayed with that thought for about an hour of copying and then I had another thought.
Second thought: Three more days of this will kill me. They can't fire me so they are trying to make me quit.
It was around this time that someone turned on the radio and filled the converted auditorium with the sounds of holiday music. I hate Christmas music almost as much as I hate 'Lite Jazz' but I can tune most of it out; as a sound-man and as a DJ, I have to be able to tolerate a fair amount of audio pollution and flat-out bad music.
But I have limits.
My breaking point came in the form of Alvin and the Chipmunks singing 'Jingle Bells'. I cannot stand Alvin and the Chipmunks- as a musician and music lover, I find the idea vastly revolting and as a sound engineer I see it as an offensively boring gimmick that is not listenable but somehow became popular. Twenty seconds of their squealing is as much as I can take, regardless of song content or context.
Without thinking, I walked across the room and stared at the radio. Unable to locate the power button within three seconds, I bent over and unplugged it from the wall. When I looked up, all the workers near me were staring in mute disbelief.
They are clearing a path. I must be pretty scary-looking.
"You don't like Christmas music?" , queried a 300-pound garden slug, rolls of slippery-looking slug-fat bulging over distended yellow sweatpants.
"No, I don't. That song in particular is offensive to my...sensibilities."
"Yes", I replied without elaborating as I went back to my photocopying.
Sometimes I think that I'm the only person in the office who realizes we work in a converted grade-school auditorium and that the domed ceiling carries whispers across the room.
"What will we do without our Christmas music?" I heard one woman ask.
"Allan played the Jew Card" replied a hushed male whisper.
Jew Card? I'm not Jewish, I just have a deep, primal hatred of Chipmunk "music"...but using a phrase like "Jew Card" reveals some character issues. I mean, if Jews make you uncomfortable, I will happily accept my new Judaism.
As an extra bonus it'll give me an excuse to ignore Christmas.