It’s Christmas — let’s all go to Krampus

Peter
Peter Jackson
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“Is editing out Santa’s pipe in ‘’Twas the Night Before Christmas’ censorship? We debate that today on ‘The Current’ at 9 a.m.”

— Tweet from CBC-Radio’s “The Current,” and winner of my inaugural Christmas Overdose Award

 

It’s official. I am the Grinch. Earlier this month, my wife and I hosted our own Christmas do. It was my idea. She thought I’d finally lost my marbles.

I dug up as diverse a variety of Christmas music as I could find. Nothing by Burl Ives or Boney M.

All was well, until I noticed a rendition of Schubert’s “Ave Maria” coming out of the speakers — a harmonica rendition.

Now, I’ve got pretty eclectic tastes. I can listen to anything from 12th-century organum to 12-bar blues. But this was something else. Hearing that delicate melody wrenched through the reeds of a mouth organ was the last straw. No more seasonal tunes.

Then came Tely bucks.

Our office held a little competition. If you did or said something nice, someone else might reward you with Tely bucks, a counterfeit currency printed just for the occasion. As the weeks went by, Tely cash circulated among staff. Some acquired large quantities. Others were more inclined to give theirs away.

At the end, you used the “money” to buy tickets on prizes. A jolly time was had by all.

Except I wasn’t very generous with my Tely bucks — mainly because I didn’t have any. Apart from one token bill handed out at the start, I did not receive a solitary Tely dime from anyone. Not a jot. Zip. Zilch.

Way to go, Tely bucks!

I am now more bitter and alienated than I ever was.

And this ain’t no holiday film, either. I won’t be swayed by a trio of midnight ghosts, nor is my heart going to grow three sizes, unless it’s because of a bad case of pericarditis.

Which got me to thinking, just what species of animal is the Grinch?

I’d always assumed the Grinch was a species of one, which would put him, curiously, in the same league as angels. But perhaps his lineage is less unique. I Googlefied it, and came across some interesting views from fellow cryptozoologists.

“Out of any animal, I think he looks most like a cat,” observed one.

I knew a cat like that. Ugly as sin.

“I thought he was a who,” noted another, referring to the denizens of neighbouring Whoville, “who was ridiculed as a youngster for looking so different, which is why he turned reclusive and mean.”

Makes sense.

The most erudite answer: “a cross between a swamp monster and all of those lost socks the dryer eats and no one ever finds.”

But I digress. The point is that this year, I have once again failed to reach a truce with Christmas. Yes, I did dance up a storm at the staff party, but that was mostly the cheap chardonnay talking.

Which leads me to my one Christmas wish.

Even though I’m admittedly

a Christmas curmudgeon, please, stop calling me the Grinch. It’s irksome and predictable. Instead, I want to be known as Krampus.

Krampus is that horned demon who rode shotgun with St. Nick in olden-day Europe. If you were a notch too high on the naughty scale, you might get a derriere-whooping from Krampus rather than a gift from Santa. Apparently, Santa was OK with this.

You don’t hear much about Krampus anymore in children’s stories. Instead, Santa rides alone. Kids don’t have to worry about him bringing muscle. Thus, kids today are hopelessly spoiled.

I rest my case.

 

Peter Jackson is The Telegram’s

commentary editor.

Email: pjackson@thetelegram.com.

Twitter @pjackson_NL

Geographic location: Europe

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