Seriously, this whole it’s OK to say Merry Christmas again nonsense is in its own small way a perfect encapsulation of how Donald Trump pollutes everything he touches or looks at or references.
For example, over the last month I’ve become hyper-aware of people saying “merry Christmas” to me at the conclusion of ordinary financial transactions, such as yesterday at a Safeway in Boulder. The clerk seemed friendly enough, and prior to this year the greeting wouldn’t have provoked a second thought, but under current circumstances a heretofore innocuous if slightly awkward social interaction (what if I’m a Muslim, or, more likely in Boulder, a Wiccan?) has been transformed into a potentially ominous exchange.
Now, saying “Merry Christmas” to a stranger who you are interacting with only because of the requirements of the cash nexus suddenly has a vaguely cult of personality-like resonance, a faint odor of an implicit loyalty test of some sort. I don’t like it, and I especially don’t like that I can’t tell whether people are saying Merry Christmas to me more often this year (I am under the impression they are, but I’m aware of how unreliable this sort of impressionistic evidence is, since prior to this year I would have been far less likely to notice).
But of course I don’t want to be needlessly rude, so I end up saying something like “same to you,” which works on multiple levels I suppose.
Rev. Lovejoy: No Homer, God didn’t burn your house down, but he was working in the hearts of your friends be they Christian, Jew, or [glances at Apu]… miscellaneous.
Apu: Hindu. There are seven hundred million of us.
Rev. Lovejoy: Aww, that’s super.