December 19, 2017

Dear Santa

Dear Santa,

We are sorry your mission has been hijacked by rank consumerism. You used to stand for something wholesome, giving the needy some of the things they would need throughout the new year. Now you are a symbol and excuse for conspicuous consumption. Your name has been sullied, and it saddens us.

In order to lighten your load, and ease you guilt for reinforcing the idea that material possessions are a real substitute for happiness, we are asking that you do not visit our homes this year. This includes future years also, unless we actually need something essential for sustaining and improving life.

And how many gifts fit that bill?

That is why you started giving in the first place - to help people with things they need. Today we confuse want with need, and your mental health hangs in the balance, as you are now complicit in environmental destruction and potential global collapse.

How can you Ho Ho Ho with a straight face when you are experiencing an existential crisis?

Worry not.

Many of us are working to see the day when your simple mission has been restored, gift-giving has returned from the stratosphere, your good name has been restored, and your elves can get that holiday you've been promising them since you kicked up your sweatshop assembly lines to 24/7/365.

You can still drop by for cookies and milk if you need a break.

Happy Solstice,

Your Friends at NBA


  1. Poor Santa has also been hit hard by global warming!

    1. Annie,

      He has to put wheels on his sleigh.

  2. Poor Santa indeed. This year is the last year that Father Christmas makes a mainstream appearance in this home. We never actually wanted him to make much of an appearance at all when we first became parents; alas grandparents and society put pay to that. Since then he's become progressively more part of our Christmas Story, albeit at times through gritted teeth on my end. With my Not Buying It challenge next year, Santa is going to have to think of new ways of interacting with us. Perhaps next Christmas he will bring a bartered orange, home made fudge or the like (either way I"m very glad we have only very small stockings to fill as one of my pet peeves are seeing the huuuuuuge sacks that you can buy for the occasion- you know,the ones that would hold 3 small children. So greedy and so unnecessary). We leave out beer and Christmas mince pies for Santa, I think he probably needs a cold one with the weight of consumerism on his mind and in his sleigh.

    1. Karen,

      We are excited for you and your family. We do not miss the craziness of Consumer Christmas. This time of year is very low key and peaceful for us. We wish that for you, too.

  3. Anonymous12/21/2017

    Happy solstice Gregg and all the NBA readers. Like Karen we are having a low key Christmas. Usual plant based food, no alcohol and the kid's had there limited presents a few weeks ago. There isn't much excitement which is nice as no one is that bothered really. As a society why bother with Christmas at all and just celebrate the solstice instead. Celebration could include mediation, fasting and talking about how great it is not to have to buy gifts anymore and that we might actually save the earth. Oh yeah people could visit a turkey sanctuary and marvel at the fact that people used to eat such wonderful birds.
    Peace to all,

    1. Alex,

      Thank you, and do enjoy low key Christmas. I like an absence of excitement this time of year. It's too dark for excitement. Wouldn't it be great if society did renounce Consumer Christmas and return to our roots of celebrating something very real and meaningful - the return of the Sun?

      We are liking your idea of visiting a turkey sanctuary this time of year. That would be a healthy thing to do. We could start with, "we are so sorry".

      I see cows on one of my bike rides. Sometimes I stop at the fence. Being smart, curious creatures, they usually walk down the hill to come and see what I am all about. When they arrive, I tell them I don't eat them, and that I love them. I think they like that.

      Love and light.

    2. Anonymous12/22/2017

      Hi Gregg, I have had the same experience with cows in a field that I run through at times.

  4. Anonymous12/22/2017

    I think that people go consumer-mad this time of year because the darkness terrifies them. They don't quite know what to do with quiet, calm, or silence. My hope is that more and more people being to slow down, befriend themselves, and enjoy what riches they find, whether in darkness or light. -Erin


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