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Archive for “Christmas” news
We're off through December 30th, and will be back with fresh news and opinion columns on December 31st. Until then, happy holidays!
Because watching Christmas movies is as legitimate a Christmas activity as midnight mass, here—besides the most obvious (Wonderful Life, Miracle on 34th, blah, blah), are the 12 that are perhaps as vital to the Christmas season as Christ’s birth itself.
You know the feeling. You’re standing in some crowded store scanning the racks and racking your brain for the perfect gift for someone on your list. The clock ticking, the crowds heaving, your whole body sweating in a store that’s 89 degrees and playing "Jingle Bell Rock" on a loop, you start to suffer from a certain holiday-specific delusion that alters all your original intentions and makes everything in the place look like an amazing idea. (“I know he said he wanted a sweater, but oh my God, he’s going to looooove this hat that looks like a fox’s head.”)Now the question as to whether the retailers do this on purpose—that is, create an environment that allows them prey on your weak holiday moments in order to move products you would never otherwise buy— is beside the point. The point, everyone, is that there are just some things, no matter what the shopping conditions may be, that you should never, under any circumstances, purchase as a Christmas gift for anyone you care about. Or for anyone, really.Here, a list of those things you should avoid this season.
It's the most wonderful time of the year! Truly, it is. The city feels festive with shiny snowflakes hanging from lightposts. Happy shoppers bustle around LOVE Park's Christmas Village. Block after block of South Philly is aglow in twinkle lights. Yukon Cornelius and the rest of the Rudolph gang have been on TV at least three times since Thanksgiving. Even the crankiest-looking people storming down Center City streets seem to have a little more pep in their step. What's not to like about Christmas?Well, quite a bit actually. Somehow, it seems like in the past few years Christmas has been on crack. Trends and traditions that should never have stuck are popping up all over the place. Here, eight things about Christmas I'd like to see disappear.
The never-ending Christmas Wars had yet another skirmish recently, and this time it was right in our region, with a bit of a twist. Those merry pranksters known as "Pastafarians," the satirical atheist group that claims to worship a deity called the Flying Spaghetti Monster, sought to include their "holiday tree" symbol among other religious iconography—including a nativity scene and Hanukkah menorah—outside the courthouse in Chester County. The tree is described in a Journal Register account as "a holiday tree laden with ornaments in the form of a squiggly spaghetti creature with meatball eyes."
Last Sunday, I attended a party to benefit Toys for Tots hosted by Vittoria and Ken Schultz at their gorgeous Chestnut Hill home High Hollow. High Hollow was designed by George Howe, who also did the iconic PSFS building. The Schultzes are in the middle of a major renovation of the 13,000-square-foot estate once occupied by Sam and Goldie Paley—while also working on their Center City boutique hotel "The Dwight D," located in the old Giovanni & Pileggi building at 256 South 16th Street.
Dear Monica, I am in a new relationship, and I want to get my girlfriend a gift for Christmas, but I am not ready to buy jewelry. What is your suggestion for a gift that says “I like you” without being overly committal? — SK, West Chester
One of the best parts of this year's Christmas Village is the newly installed Wish Wall, where Philadelphians can purchase a seasonally themed piece of cardboard—sorry, an ornament—and share their hopes and dreams with the rest of the city by hanging it on a large board at 15th and Market streets. It sounds a little corny, but it's actually quite moving to see people wishing for relief from cancer and an end to homelessness, and for newborn babies and peace on earth. Every time I wander by, I am charmed by the sweet intentions. I am also highly amused because a handful of Philadelphians have used this space to wish for things that are, shall we say, a bit less noble. Here, some of the most entertaining well-wishes.
We're not sure what's more insulting: calling the West Chester–based TV retailer an "odd place to buy holiday gifts," or putting it two spots below public restrooms. [Market Watch]
I don't know about you, but nothing puts me in the mood to do a little house shopping like a floodlit neighborhood overrun with slack-jawed yule-kels out for a free illuminatory thrill. Lucky for us, real estate site Redfin — clearly hoping we'll buy as we spy — just put five tasty local choices under our tree:South Philadelphia: 1600 block of South 13th StreetSouth Philadelphia West: Smedley Street between 16th & 17th, Moyamensing and Oregon avenuesDrexel Hill: 700 block of Fairfax RoadWillow Grove: Valenza Christmas Lights, Brendan Circle & Terwood RoadSchwenksville: Lights on Stallion, 215 Stallion Lane