I hate a lot of things. I hate traffic. I hate hot weather. I hate poodles. (Not to be a dog supremacist, but STOP MIXING THEM WITH OTHER BREEDS. You’re making dogs look like fried chicken and it’s crippling us as a society.) Trust me, I understand hate. I know how it hangs out in your stomach and radiates out through your pores. It takes over your thoughts, like a thirsty queen takes over the good table at Big Gay Starbucks. You can’t control it. It’s the worst. I get it.
But what I don’t get is how anyone could hate Christmas. Christmas is about joy and cheer and cookies and presents. It’s carols and parties and cookies and presents. It’s about family and friends and cookies and presents. WHAT KIND OF MONSTER HATES COOKIES AND PRESENTS?!
Remember when you were little, and you didn’t have bills to pay, or bosses to yell at you, or Tinder dates to walk out on? Remember that wonderment that came at the end of the year, knowing that you’d soon be swimming in cookies and presents? It was way before adulthood had ruined you with taxes and breakups and the series finale of The Sopranos. You could still feel pure joy, no matter what the world threw at you.
So why wouldn’t you want to experience that again? Maybe I’m just a big gay optimist, but thinking about Christmas now makes me remember how good Christmas felt then. No matter how awful my day is, I can think about Christmas Vacation and eggnog and always feel a little better. Why would you hate that?
By the way, I know Christmas can be shoved down your throat. The commercialization of Christmas can seem a little aggressive, what with all the commercials and the music and the decorations. But you know that’s not what it’s about, right? And no one is holding a knife to your throat to buy stuff. You can easily ignore commercials. And you can not buy things when you’re at Target picking up your what-nots. Just watch the church scene in Home Alone again. You’ll see.
And don’t say it’s because your religion doesn’t celebrate Christmas. I’m an atheist. Christmas isn’t about god anymore. Calm down. Christmas is a feeling. It’s an escape. It’s a time to not think about the career you don’t have. Christmas is when we forget about the dumb stuff and enjoy the not dumb stuff. Like COOKIES AND PRESENTS.
Some people didn’t have the best childhoods. Some people didn’t wake up on Christmas morning to a huge pile of presents and a huge pile of cookies. But that feeling was still there, right? Weren’t you still excited and optimistic just to get some new socks and a card from Santa? I was. There were a lot of Christmas mornings where all we got were socks and hugs, and I loved it. If you didn’t get it then, start it now. Make new traditions. Christmas is whatever you want it to be. Even if it’s just a day off work and a bunch of junk food. You can make it happy. Why wouldn’t you want to spend as much time as possible in that moment?
Celebrate your memories. Cherish your family and friends, living or dead. If you can’t make it home for Christmas and that makes you sad, go to the movies. Get Chinese food. Serve food to the less fortunate. MAKE NEW TRADITIONS. Christmas gets better. I promise. It really is the most wonderful time of year. You don’t have to hate it as much as you think you do.
Todd Masterson is a comedian, writer, and producer. He lives in West Hollywood with his tiny partner, Rob, and their little black pug, Braddock. Todd has written for several icons, including Joan Rivers and James Franco. He recently produced season 7 of RuPaul’s Drag Race and currently produces a monthly stand-up show in West L.A. called The Talkies. When he's not onstage being an adorable giant, Todd can be found stomping up the hill at Runyon Canyon or at home obsessing over social media like a 12 year-old girl.