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December 27, 2005

Pass the Phillips Head Screwdriver

arrrggg. On Christmas eve Christine and I had her parents and some good friends of ours over for dinner. It's a tradition for us to have Christmas eve dinner at our house. Once everyone leaves, the cleanup starts and then the dreaded hauling of the "Santa presents" that we were in hiding, up from the basement to put under the tree. Usually there are countless hours spent putting together toys from directions written and illustrated by someone with a 9th grade eduction - this year was no different. Except for the fact that I wound up putting Alec's "ESPN 6 Game" (that's right, 6 different sports games in one) monstrosity together on the 26th vs Christmas Eve/Day. Two and a half hours later, I had the 24 second clock working on the basketball backboard and the kids yelling and screaming to "be next" in trying to beat dads score of 73 points. ahhh Christmas!

p.s. I think they should put a sticker on toys that require assembly that indicate how many hours "on average" it should take to assemble. Like they do for food with calories, fat, carbs, etc.

December 27, 2005 in Biographical, Current Affairs, Weblogs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

December 19, 2005

Hanukkah vs Christmas

This year Hanukkah and Christmas start/fall on the same day. When I was growing up there were like 2 Jewish families within 10 miles. The majority of families were Catholic, and there were some Protestants given most everyone was either Italian or Irish - so I knew nothing about Jewish holidays. I couldn't even tell you where the nearest synagogue was. Now, some of my closest and dearest friends are Jewish. This year Christmas day starts the beginning of Hanukkah. I always guessed that the start of Hanukkah had something to do with the the number of days after the solstice so I looked into it - and it does! It follows the Hebrew calendar, which follows the lunar calendar (I have no idea which came first) and is the 25th day of Kislev (apparently there was some type of re-dedication of a temple on the 25th). The Hebrew calendar follows a 19 year cycle and Hanukkah starts on the same day (25th) of every year of the Hebrew/lunar calendar. But the rest of the Christian world follows the Gregorian calendar (a solar calendar). So the Christians follow one calendar and the Muslims and the Jews follow another - I think we got started on the wrong foot. Another thing I don't get is that other Christian holidays, like Easter, follow the lunar calendar. So some Christian holidays follow the lunar calendar, others follow the solar calendar. Hmmm, weird. Anyway, I thought it was pretty cool that at least this year the Christians and the Jews can start to celebrate together. Now if we can only figure out Ramadan.

December 19, 2005 in Biographical, Religion, Weblogs | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack