Happy (Insert Holiday of Your Choice Here), Argh People!

Hanukkah was over yesterday, Christmas ends tonight at midnight, Kwanza starts tomorrow, and I’m sure there are other celebrations I’ve missed (Winter Solstice, Deb?) so here’s wishing you all a fabulous whatever and an even more fabulous 2015.

And in the fine old Argh tradition (2010, 2011, 2013) here’s the official Argh Christmas carol. Because the Drifters work for any any day any where, no matter what they’re singing.

38 thoughts on “Happy (Insert Holiday of Your Choice Here), Argh People!

  1. My daughters made me a stocking, and because they are teenagers, they are still asleep, and i feel some kind of obligation to wait to open it until they can watch me be amused…

  2. Yes happy, merry, to you and all the Argh peeps. I’d looked for the tradition here yesterday and figured you were swamped. Going to play it again! Love it!

  3. I am very sorry to contradict you but Christmas does not end until midnight of Jan 6, 2015. Today is only the first day of Christmas. Thank you.

    1. Absolutely. The sun’s standing still, and I find I need to, too. I’m about to go to bed after a rather good, peaceful Christmas Day. Bright sun, good food. Just me and Mum. Rounded off by watching ‘The Lady Vanishes’: always fun.

      Hope all of you still only partway through the day have a great time.

    2. Yes, it’s the first day of Christmas, trala la la la LA, etc. Enjoy or ignore as you wish. I find it takes a lot of pressure off if I keep the whole twelve days in mind.

    3. Yes, here in Germany the second day of Christmas (26th) is also a bank holiday… Saturday, the 27th stores are open again.

    4. Is this that Boxing Day thing? Because here Christmas Day is one day and then THANK GOD the holiday is over. Because otherwise we’d all kill each other with the constant music and wrapping paper and the forty thousand sales and HAVE YOU BOUGHT THIS YET and ohmygodkillmenow. One day, and then the calendar sets my people free.

      The only holiday I like is Halloween because there’s a lot of candy and the holiday junk is awesome. I get my best ravens at the Halloween sales. Spider cupcake holders. Skulls. And the music is mostly “Thriller” and “Monster Mash,” and I can deal with those.

      1. Boxing Day is for recovering from Christmas Day. Vegging out, or going for a walk. Maybe meeting up with friends. Eating leftovers (feasting without the frantic cooking of Christmas Day). It’s a Good Thing.

        Of course, it’s also traditionally when the sales start in Britain; but only idiots spend Boxing Day queuing or fighting crowds of shoppers.

      2. No, not really Boxing Day, which got its name from the fact that tradespeople and servants, etc., got prezzies (boxes) from bosses, etc. Simply ‘the second Christmas Day’ (“zweiter Weihnachtstag”). Christmas Eve (“Heiligabend” or “Holy Evening”) is usually when the Christmas Guy (“Weihnachtsmann” — usually played by a neighbor or a relative) shows up at the door with a bag and gives kids their presents. In my first husband’s family kids only got prezzies if they recited a poem for the Weihnachtsmann. In my second husband’s family the tradition is fish on Heiligabend, so this year I made trout with new potatoes, butter sauce and salad. Oh, yes, and he likes spicy Thai soup as a starter (don’t ask me why…definitely not “tradition”).

        Shops close up by early afternoon on the 24th. The 25th (“erster Weihnachtstag” or “erster Feiertag”) is usually quiet. We often invite friends over for dinner — this year it was the visit to his aunt (see below). Today it would have been meeting with friends as well, but that got cancelled for health reasons.

        All the shops and everything are closed here, so we really have 2-1/2 days of peace and quiet (’cause we’re not in the hospitality industry, haha). The only pain is that everyone goes nuts over grocery shopping the couple of days before because the stores are closed. And next year they will be closed for 3-1/2 days, because Heiligabend lands on Thurs, the First Day of Christmas on Fri, the Second on Sat and we have no shopping here on Sundays (with minor exceptions in major tourist areas and then only in the center). So we have to stock up for half a week (smile)….

  4. Yes, Jenny, Winter Solstice (or Yule…as in “the Yuletide merry” and such) was the 21st. I got to celebrate that with our traditional formal Yule Dinner Party on the 20th (my witchy gang, plus husbands for those who have them, plus my two darling goddess-children Nate and Sophie, who are 7 and 8). As a bonus, my beloved step-daughter is in town through her birthday on the 1st. She, her mom, and our mutual best friend Ellen all had Christmas breakfast at my house this morning (I made eggs Benedict with crab cakes…heaven) and then opened stockings and gifts to much merriment. Best Christmas ever (okay, I’ve only had a couple, when I was married or in a relationship, but still). Happy Everything to all!

  5. Wishing all of the people of Argh love, peace and joy today and in the coming year.

    Thanks for continuing the Argh homage to the Drifters.

  6. Oh, those Drifters, mellowing out the Season. Winter Solstice is my celebration, happy to report all was cheerful and merry and bright. So is December 25th, and even happier to report all is quiet and peaceful on this on-the-go island. Wishing all our best wishes come true and the new year brings peace and contentment.

      1. Oh, thank you (belatedly), Solstice I celebrated in the desert with snow on the San Gabriel mountains. Very pretty and holy.

  7. I’m an atheist, so I’m technically celebrating National Fuel The Economy For Another Year Day, but what the heck — the boys call it Christmas, it’s Christmas. Very happy boys, a good time had by all, and a little time off for their mother, the Beautiful Woman. Whatever you’re celebrating, or not celebrating (or just finished celebrating, or are about to celebrate) I hope your coming year goes as well as our day just did.

    1. You’re celebrating Xmas. No Christ, just the give me (X) more (mas is more in Spanish). I think of it as the marketers holiday.

  8. We did our good deed for Christmas and went to visit my husband’s aunt, who is the last of that generation and who will soon be 88. She was doing extremely well until about a year ago, we thought she’d make it to 100, then a series of mini-strokes and now Parkinson’s has changed all that.

    So we packed up stuff and went to her house and I cooked Christmas dinner there. I made a salad, Hirschragout (elk goulash) with spaetzle (a sort of German noodle), and red cabbage, with tomato soup with fresh basil and creme fraiche for a starter. Then my homemade German Christmas cookies “Vanillekipferl” (first attempt and turned out fine — after all these years my husband finally told me they are his favorite Christmas cookies…), as well as Stollen (German Christmas cake) for dessert. I played some Christmas carols on her old piano, everybody dozed off in the living room while I (naturally) washed up the dishes and cleaned up the kitchen. The dog got a big fat bone (they now sell the parma ham bones for dogs, so she really got a nice Christmas present) and spent all afternoon chewing away happily.

    All in all, except for dreary wet weather, a sort of idyllic Christmas tableau.

    Then we came home and tried to skype with my folks in the States and had problems (some setting somewhere). And there was a message on the answering machine that one of our elderly friends here in Germany went to the hospital for something with his innards. We were going to meet them for coffee and cake today, but she called to cancel (obviously). Running tests, still not sure what it is. But he’s 85 and you always worry.

    However, that doesn’t stop us from wishing everyone happy holidays!

    1. Spaetzle and stollen I knew–lotta German in my family tree–but elk goulash is new.
      And now you have reminded me to make sure I have sauerkraut for New Year’s Day. Isn’t it funny how traditions that have no meaning for us personally stick? I truly do not believe that eating sauerkraut on New Year’s Day will bring me good luck, but I eat it anyway.

      1. In the fall and into the early winter months, you traditionally find game (“Wild”) on menus and in the stores: venison, wild boar, and game birds. It usually disappears again after a couple of months.

        The elk goulash came about because my stepson actually wanted quail’s breasts, but they were sold out. They did have quail’s legs but we thought “meh”. Then we thought about goose or duck, which are also pretty traditional at Christmas time (as is carp).

        We could have also had venison or wild boar, but then we decided on the elk. I cooked it with onions and red wine and fresh rosemary from my garden as well as a couple of bay leaves, and thickened the gravy with a roux. Gotta admit myself, it was damned good!

        (BTW, in German and in many Scandanavian languages they call moose “Elch” — which means that many Germans get moose and elk confused. I haven’t found moose in the supermarkets, but I believe in places further north you can get that and reindeer and other stuff at this time of year too.)

        1. Oh, yeah, forgot to mention: the elk is actually farm-raised in New Zealand — there’s no room for roaming elk herds in Germany. Globalization has its advantanges, haha.

      2. My family is from Pennsylvania, through which state you cannot drive on New Year’s Day without catching a whiff of vinegar in the air … and I here the elk are making a comeback in them thar mountains. Me, I don’t eat saur kraut, but I’ll be taking mom up to her sister’s for the annual tradition, and I’ll have pork and mashed potatoes. We have survived just enough crises in my family over the past few years that I no longer scoff over whether or not traditions bring good luck. It can’t hurt is my motto.

    1. Except on the BBC iPlayer Radio for iPad app I just downloaded, where it says (confusingly) that the episodes are available for a year. I shouldn’t rely on that, though.

  9. Yay! The Drifters! Happy times, Argh people. We went to the in-laws and were supposed to stay until tomorrow but Tall Boy is rather sick so we came home (11 hour drive) today. His dad had pneumonia and were hoping it’s not that as he’s terrified of it. He lost one good friend to it and nearly lost another. We had a nice visit with no hurt feelings or fights so that was a Christmas miracle but I’m still glad to be home. I discovered before we left that our year and a half old cat, Pumpkin, knows how to open cupboard doors. He’s mastered bi folds and pocket and I rue the day he figures out the one corner cupboard with the hinges in the middle.

  10. Has anyone seen The Imitation Game, with Benedict Cumberbatch? I went alone to a matinee yesterday, and now I have no one to discuss it with. *grin* Wonderful storytelling, and a great character study. It was so intimately told I almost felt I knew the main character’s internal thoughts. Awesome, and I think definitely Oscar worthy.

  11. Robena, I’ve heard that they try to make Turing out as a traitor (that is, his conviction for being gay was really for treason) but I don’t know anyone else who has actually seen the movie. Did they do that? Or even hint at it? It seems odd, since he wasn’t but we all know that movies based on true stories/history often don’t have the slightest element of truth in them.

  12. There were hints mid-movie. They knew there was a spy in the hut. Not him, and it was made clear in the movie who it was. His homosexuality didn’t become public until after the war. Don’t want to post spoilers, but I thought it held true to what we know of him and of that time. So beautifully acted. Well worth the trip to the theater.

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