I'm a big fan of the Christmas season. Hanukkah isn't really a huge deal, despite what my non-Jewish friends might tell you. And I'm also convinced Kwanzaa is a giant fake, but Christmas? I'm a fan. Even with its own sketchy origins, Christmas is the anchor for the month. Sometimes many months, depending on whether or not your local Walmart has decided to start their Christmas advertising in September. Some do.
But it's not all about shopping and over the top musicals staring Irving Berlin and Rosemary Clooney. The Christmas season is a time where people are nice to those they hate. Which, as I think most of you know, is how the social media world works year-round.
Hey. Don't look at me. I call it social publishing and tell people whether I think they're assholes or heroes every day of the year. Blame the snake oil salesman out there pushing "passion", "trust", "attention", and all the other bullshit buzzwords.
If you're looking to pass on the good will this holiday season, whether because you actually want to or because you're trying to get something, I have some advice. This used to be top secret information at the CIA. Thankfully, I slept my way to the top and was able to obtain this important file for you to see.
This is what you should,and shouldn't, say when wishing your friends and marks a joyous holiday season.
What you should say: "Happy Hanukkah! Would you like to play the dreidel game with me?"
What you shouldn't say: "Happy Chan-uk-ka! What night is this, five? When is this shit over?"
What you should say: "Merry Christmas!" Bonus: Merry Christmas! I hope you have a happy new year as well!" (Don't ever pass up the twofer.)
What you shouldn't say: "You know, Jesus wasn't born on the 25th, so fuck this. And fuck you and your fake holiday. I'm going to go drop a load of coal on Santa's desk."
What you should say: "I want to wish you a joyous Kwanzaa."
What you shouldn't say: "If I wish you a happy Kwanzaa, can I be sent to jail for perpetuating fraud?"
You could always play it safe too. Say, "Season's Greetings" or wish folks a "Happy Holidays". Just don't do that around your uppity conservative friends. Actually, don't say either of those in general. They're just an empty, soulless way of passing on cheap, non-goodwill to people. Stick to Christmas or Hanukkah, and if you're really out of options, wish them an awesome Winter solstice. No one will see that coming and enjoy your ingenuity. Or punch you in the face. Either way, you've done all you could.
Follow Brandon Mendelson on Twitter: www.twitter.com/bjmendelson