An Anticipating Culture

2ele3apI don’t know about the rest of the world but here in the U.S. we just can’t wait.  The sad part is probably because of exhaustion from all planning once the event has arrived it’s completely forgotten.

We already know that Christmas is now a “season” and not really a day anymore that begins immediately after Halloween.  “Jingle Bells” in early November still makes me wince.  Try saying “Happy Thanksgiving on “Black Friday” and you’ll get the look that says, “that was yesterday, where have you been?”  Belated birthdays is my favorite when I wish someone yearly greetings and the response is, “It was yesterday but thanks.”  Damn, I missed it by twelve hours.

We all realize the business aspect to anticipation.  Walgreen’s can’t wait to get the Easter eggs on the shelves before we even have ashes placed on our foreheads.  (Doesn’t Jesus need to die first before resurrecting or is it just me?)

Looking forward to anything is a wonderful experience and often more rewarding then the happening.  Turning sixty was anticipated by me for six months and when I woke up on that fateful day I thought, “Oh, okay” and I went to work.

Try saying “Merry Christmas” to someone on December 26 and the same look will be given to you because the anticipation now is forwarded to New Year’s Eve.

Presidential races start far too soon for the average consumer to consume topics that will not be topical in two years.  Weddings are far too anticipated as though the sun has finally melded with the moon.  I understand the details in wedding planning but I now receive a postcard announcing that a postcard will soon arrive with blissful details about the sun and moon melding.

If you see me, please wish me a “Happy Birthday” a day or two after the date because I believe in octaves.  “Merry Christmas” is wonderful for me to hear from the 24 through January 1.  And January 1?  I hope that you have a “Happy New Year” every day of every year of your life.

About Rev. Joe Jagodensky, SDS.

A Roman Catholic priest since 1980 and a member of the Society of the Divine Savior (Salvatorians). Six books on the Catholic church and U.S. culture are available on
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