Our View: Christmas means something different to everyone
December 4, 2012
Filed under Opinion
My favorite Christmas goes back to 1999, when I woke up to find that I had gotten a new sled and Pikachu slippers. I was eight years old at the time, and anything pertaining to Pokemon was like God’s gift to Earth, in my eyes. On top of the Pikachu slippers, I got a Pikachu doll and Pokemon stickers, pencils and cards. I also got a robotic dog that was connected to a leash and, based on whether you pressed the up or down button, the dog either walked or barked. Because my mom was against having any real pets, this robotic dog was the closest I’d ever gotten to the real deal. I was thrilled.
– Alexandra Didato
My favorite memory from past Christmases would definitely be the only Christmas I can remember where I was truly surprised by the gifts I got. I had had my eye on a Lego remote-controlled car that could be re-made into a lot of configurations and could go off-road through mud, water, snow and just about anything else you could throw at it. There was no way I was ever going to get this thing; it was out of my parents’ price range by a long shot. I didn’t even include it on my Christmas list that went out to the relatives. Christmas morning came and I got started on my presents. One of the first ones I opened had a curious-looking rechargeable battery pack in it. I remember saying “No, it can’t be.” Then I hurriedly unwrapped the rest of the set.
– Andrew Krigline
My favorite Christmas memories have to be of watching the old stop-motion holiday specials like “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town” and “The Year Without a Santa Claus” with my family. Every year we huddle around the TV and wait for our favorite ones to come on and get us into the Christmas spirit.
Nowadays, my brother and I like to make fun of the outdated animation, the ridiculous songs, and the silly plots, where Christmas is always in danger of being cancelled. A couple of years ago, we actually bought a DVD collection of all of our favorites, so now we don’t have to wait in anticipation for ABC Family to air their chopped-up versions riddled with commercials. I haven’t watched any of these Christmas movies yet this year, but I can’t wait to kick off the marathon!
– Katie Soinski
When I was a young lad, Christmas morning was the best time of the year. I made sure that I woke up early (and trust me, that never happened) to see what treasures awaited me under the tree in the living room. I would rummage through the presents and organize them according to whose present was whose. Then I would wait for my parents, brothers and sisters to wake up. My brothers and I never left my parents alone; we wanted to open the presents as soon as possible.
When the time came to open the presents, I would go crazy. Wrapping paper flew everywhere as I ripped through my booty. I would deliver any present that wasn’t mine to the proper owner and scream excitedly for no apparent reason. On that day, I played with every present. Later on, I started to play favorites.
One Christmas morning I remember specifically: when my brothers and I received our first Pokemon decks. We sat in the family room for hours in only our shirts and tighty-whities, pretending we knew how to trade Pokemon cards. We didn’t care; it was fun, regardless of whose Bulbasaur belonged to whom.
– Beau Brown
Arts & Life Editor
My best Christmas memory would be when I was younger and would always wake up extremely early on Christmas day, usually by 8 a.m. My mom would tell us not to wake her up before then, because it was too early. My brothers, my mother and I would all go downstairs, and my mother would grab the video camera and record each of us as we opened our gifts. Sometimes she would even create a scavenger hunt and plant clues to help us figure out where our presents were around the house. This added to the fun!
– Matt Sympson
My favorite Christmas morning memory is of watching my boyfriend’s mom open a very special gift from her two sons: a Pandora charm bracelet. The gift was special because that was the 13th Christmas my boyfriend and his family celebrated without his father, who had died of cancer. My boyfriend and his brother bought charms that we knew would be meaningful to their mom: an angel, a dog, a rose and also charms of their birthstones. His mom was so touched by her sons’ thoughtfulness that she was moved to tears. Seeing her reaction warmed my heart and created a lasting memory that I will never forget.
– Heather Beyer
Most of my childhood Christmas memories involve opening presents, which, y’know. Duh. So I figured I’d try to recall some more recent ones. A couple of Christmas Eves ago, I hit the Akron bars with my dude-bros. We parked on Wheeler Street and my buddy opened up a twelver of Beast Ice and we slammed a few while talking about Radiohead, probably. When we were good to go, I handed him my empties, at which he said — and here I quote verbatim — “I can’t throw ‘em out on my side, man. It’s… it’s crazy on my side.” Inside Thursday’s, I bought a tall PBR (naturally) and sat down at a table by myself (naturally), facing the dancer floor, whereupon dudes in wolf shirts and twirled moustaches were grinding on girls who were being, I realized even then, remarkably tolerant. I took a moment to bathe in the warmth of my own superiority. The DJ put on “My Girls” by Animal Collective and I crossed myself involuntarily. I had upwards of a million PBRs and talked about scholastic pride with a bald man I barely knew, and then at some point my friends and I relocated to the Matinee in Highland Square. On the back patio, my buddy bought $20 worth of something from a pretty amiable guttersnipe, and then someone lit a firework and threw it onto a nearby roof and started a fire. Which was tight. Later, at Ray’s, some girl beckoned my friend closer and whispered in his ear “Tell your friend to go away. He’s creeping me out.” So we went back to the Mat’, and then, as it turned out, to that same girl’s house. I made fun of whatever they were playing on the stereo, and then all I really remember is sitting on a couch. In the morning I checked the notepad in my phone and it said “pancake fantasies” and “Tchaikovsky.” No idea.
– Kevin Kane
In the second grade, my friends and I started a tradition. About a week before Christmas, my friends and I would hold what we dubbed Cookie-Baking. While the name does not seem all that exciting, Cookie-Baking was one of the greatest times of our childhoods and is something that we look forward to every year.
My friends Rachael and Michael always held Cookie-Baking at their house. Every year my brother Andrew and I would go over for a couple of days of playing games, frosting cookies and making chocolate-covered pretzels. This tradition started when I was in the second grade and has continued through to this year, my junior year of college.
It may seem crazy to some that we have continued this tradition into our adult years, but it is the one chance during the year that we six friends, who have known each other since elementary school, can get together for a couple of days of wholesome laughter and fun.
The tradition will most likely end this year. Michael entered the Marines and will not be home for Christmas. My brother Andrew and my best friend Rachael recently signed up for the Navy and will be leaving next year. These friends are more like my family, and while we know that this event, which has for so long been a part of our lives, can’t continue for much longer, we will always cherish this favorite Christmas memory with our greatest of friends.
– Katelyn Freil