Sunday, December 22, 2013

Tazi's Corner #72 - Let's Create An American "Boxing Day" Tradition!

Dear Readers,

Approximately 250 years ago (237 1/2, to be exact) the American Colonies declared their independence from all things British and over the next few decades created what it now known as the United States of America. Such was their desire to form a new culture that they chose to separate themselves from all things British - a great irony, when one considers the United States' obsession with the British royal family - including British traditions. It is one such tradition I wish to speak upon today, and ask that we put our own, "American" twist to it; that tradition is Boxing Day.

Boxing Day traditionally occurs on December 26th, the day after Christmas and is a day to celebrate those who provide services and therefore must work on Christmas Day. Originally house servants were given this day off to celebrate the Christmas holiday with their own families (having served their employers on Christmas) and were given a boxed gift from their employer as a token of appreciation (thus the name, "Boxing Day"). Modern Boxing Day celebrations include taking part in eccentric sporting activities, like swimming the English Channel; spending time with family; or even shopping the post-Christmas sales. Essentially, Boxing Day has turned into a day of further celebration and indulgence...but what if it could be something more?

Gosh I love Boxing Day...

Among Catholics, December 26th is the much forgotten Feast of Saint Stephen, the first martyr (and the day celebrated in the carol Good King Wenceslas), a day to bring alms to the poor. I like this tradition much better, and would ask that you consider starting your own Boxing Day tradition in this vein, regardless of your religious affiliation (or lack thereof).

Each December, millions of dollars are spent on presents - toys, clothes, games, electronics, you name it! I ask, is any of this stuff going to replace the things you already have or is it simply going to be added to your stockpile of stuff? Wouldn't it be nice if you could box up your "old" while putting away the "new" and donate it to charities that provide for those in need? Instead of boxing up the Christmas ornaments, why not spend this day boxing sweaters you will no longer wear because you have several new ones? What are you planning on doing with that "old" gaming system now that you have a new XBox One or PlayStation 4? How much do you expect it will fetch on eBay? Why not donate these items to the Salvation Army? You could even get a receipt for the tax deduction!

This year, let's make Boxing Day about extending the true meaning of Christmas - sharing; caring; and giving of ourselves to others, not of overindulging in sweet treats, alcohol, and football.


Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with Bachelors degrees in Communications and in Gender and Women's Studies. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

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