The wrong Christmas party

To paraphrase Eminem, ‘If you had one moment, one opportunity, to be everything you never were, would you capture it, or let it slip?’ Christmas is a time of giving, of reconnecting with loved ones; I’d like to share my own experience of a library sponsored Christmas party. I felt so out of place in said party. Everybody else was at least 50 years old. The lib was in downtown sydney. I wouldn’t name it in spite of my experience, as it is best to avoid name dropping.

Restricted access
From the start, there were signs that this repository was a bit off. I remember how I had to sign up and pay a membership fee, with an older friend having recommended the place for the quiet and conducive ambience. Later, I went in with another friend before the staff told us not long after, to get lost since my other pal wasn’t a library member. Another time while studying in the lib, the same grumpy witch told a lady who was sitting head down, ‘No sleeping in the library!’ 

Going back to the partay, I felt really out of place. I struck a conversation with this guy, who couldn’t yap enough about his being an atheist. He gave me a good rant about the Jesus myth and how Hitler happened to be Catholic. He said he enjoys Christmas, a pagan tradition arrogated by Catholics. The food wasn’t bad; there were nachos and a few other finger food. They even had peach juice and wine. Soon I was talking with this bald guy about paintings. When we were studying this nude artwork, I asked him what he thought. ‘Something’s missing,’ he said. ‘How old do you think I am?’ ‘60?’ ‘I’m 73’, he retorted.

Jamming with Sue
Then I met these two ladies, Sue and company. It was a long time ago, so I can’t remember the latter’s name. We had a good talk; I told them I was just finishing my Honours degree. I distinctly recall Sue saying that she cooked some dinner for her teenage kids, so they won’t starve. I complemented her, saying that she’s a good mum. I also told them that I yearned to travel the world someday. I’m sure you will, they said in unison. While shaking hands with the oldies, I met the main man, Douglas. I heard he ran the show. He told me that I was their youngest member. Gauging from the crowd gathered that day, I’d say he was spot on. 

The prize draw
Before the night was done, there was a raffle. Numbers were called, with each guest provided a ticket upon entering. Sue’s friend was just one number away from winning the cruise to Fiji. Neither of the people I approached won anything. The atheist left before the draw was over. So much for the Christmas spirit. This Yuletide season, let’s mull this one over: Giving something you don’t need is easy, but to share something you hold dearly is divine. On a personal note, buying things is a cakewalk, but how about buying others things? I hope you, like me, would learn each Christmas that it’s not the gifts that matter, but how willing you are to share the love, no matter which party you join. 

From Mot Juste on the eve of the big day: a happy and safe holiday season to all

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