by Nic Olson

December is a time of joy. Fresh snow and the re-introduction to long johns. Specialty foods that are best served with rum, and the fresh smell of softwood pine on hardwood floor. We don’t really need to get into it because everyone loves at least one thing about this time of year. I love shinny. I also love peace and joy and goodness.

December is a time for fear and disenchantment. A time where the naturally negative have no choice but to become overly negative, seeing the masses shovel goods into steel cages with wheels, only to bring further joy to those who live the softest lives of all. Any level-headed person working retail, or any observant person that requires public interaction, knows that this time of year is the time with the least amount of good.

If a person has a belief, they can have confidence in this time of year to create a feeling of worldwide hope, with joy and love. There is nothing wrong with that. But if a person loses this belief, but doesn’t gain what the rest of the population has, i.e. greed, then where are they to go?

Today I was enjoying a classic nineties film, ‘Dude, Where’s My Car?’ today, when I was interrupted by a phone call on my friend’s cell phone. I needed to call work. Usually when this happens, when work somehow manages to hunt me down even when I don’t have a cell phone, I assume the worst. Either Travis completely lost it and ate all of the Hickory Farms pepperoni and murdered some bro that stole the multi-coloured Circas, the till is broken, or I screwed something up somehow. This was no such call. For some reason I urgently needed to know that we were beginning to listen to Christmas music at work, and I needed to plan my iPod accordingly.

I don’t understand torrenting. File sharing. I don’t even know what it is, how to do it, why to do it or what happened to Napster. But it is going to be hard to get Christmas music on my iPod without stealing it, because I sure as hell am not going to spend money on it.

I would love to try and express my feelings about human beings and consumption and brainwashing and what real hope entails, but you probably know what I’m going to say. And it is not going to do any good saying it. Its hard to talk about it when no matter what is said, it is cliche. Whether it is about the true meaning of whatever, or how we need to actually think of others and whatever. Hmm.

Let’s go play shinny!