It’s Christmas (Excess) Time: I Need Lettuce

I’m just gonna come out and say Christmas in this here country seems mainly about excess in just about every corner of life: lights and larger-than-life inflatable yard thingummies, unfortunate arrangements of popular Christmas carols, sad-looking folk ringing bells over red pots outside supermarkets and big box stores (do not even get me started on that particular institution), toys, traffic, over-stimulated children and short tempers, and on and on, none in moderation, all to excess. And where holiday cuisine goes, too, too, too much sugar, butter, salt, flour, eggs, chocolate, peppermint. And “tan” foods as far as the eye can see. It’s not like you can avoid any of this: you can try like crazy, but unless you live like a hermit, you’ll still experience total immersion. Or even a full frontal assault, like being whapped upside the head with a two-by-four.

‘Tis the season when I begin to yearn for the fresh, crunchy greens I routinely buy at the farmer’s market on the way home from work in the summertime, now a memory. I also feel the need to apologize to my insides for the full frontal assault that is holiday nosh. A reprieve is coming, and soon. There will be a New World Order when it’s all over (still a few days yet); Handsome Chef Boyfriend and I have been talking about it.

But in the middle of all the excess this year something floated through the ether and landed in front of my nose the way so many things do, these days, via social media. I have a dear friend to thank for it, a former roommate, herself a fount of beautiful things. I was so gobsmacked by this I’ve been thinking about it for days and days. It has made me reflect long and hard about the culture of excess and what there is to show for it, which is often so little.

And yet out of so little, these two young children create profound beauty. Yes, I believe the word profound is not overbaked to describe this pair. I do not know where this lovely little piece of film was shot, nor who made it. I do not know the country of origin, nor the exact ethnicity of these children. There are no frills or spangles, no costumes or other equipment, no special effects, no mirrors: the space through which they are moving is even missing its walls.

Enough said. Here is a Christmas offering for you, or maybe a Christmas antidote, a bit of visual lettuce, if you will. I wish you peace and moderation for the duration of the season.


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