Stop the Presses | Bah, humbug

Bah, humbug, gets a bad rap.
You want to think, as you’ve been taught since childhood, that the bah, humbuggers among us have an irrational distaste for the yuletide season.
The way we even say it – Bah! Humbug! – reflects that.
I’ve not actually said the words out loud lately, but the way I’ve been thinking them tells me there’s another side to bah, humbug.

Mine is more a resignation.

Bah … humbug … would be a better way to relate it.

I just don’t feel the spirit this year.

It’s been a tough year, admittedly. It began with me traveling back from Florida from a rare winter vacation to watch a football bowl game to learn that my father had suddenly passed.

Making that bad news eternally worse was that Dad and I had had a falling out a couple of years ago and had not made amends.

And then came word from an aunt who told me after he passed that he had confided in her shortly before his passing that he had wanted to make things right again.

Later came my first foray into electoral politics, which ended rather ingloriously for me personally and I sincerely believe to the detriment of my hometown’s long-term future as well.

We’re seeing that now with the news that the city’s last big manufacturing employers is laying off hundreds, possibly with more bad news to come on that front next year.

And now my grandmother, my beloved Granny, as we all have called her for long enough that it can be hard to remember that she wasn’t given that name at birth, is in a hospital fighting for her life, and will probably be there through Christmas, and maybe a little longer.

It’s hard for me to get all that excited about Christmas gifts and cookies and lights and the rest, you know, given, well …

Maybe Scrooge did hate Christmas, so maybe his bah, humbug, was a Bah! Humbug!

Mine is more a whimper.

Bah …

 

– Column by Chris Graham


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