Five things you should know about Christmas, by a non-Christmas celebrator
Why Christmas should not have to take over everyone’s lives
'You don't celebrate Christmas? Why not? What about the presents?" are questions any non-Chrimbo celebrator is sure to have been asked on many occasions.
Now don't get me wrong, we love the wintery weather and fairy-light extravaganza that the festive season entails just as much as the next person. But being of a minority religion and having never actively celebrated Christmas, we've learnt a few things by observing the madness from an outside perspective.
Christmas is an excellent excuse for lots of day drinking
With offers on every alcoholic drink imaginable in the supermarket, the festive season provides the perfect excuse to drink all day every day. With alcohol playing a vital role in any December celebration, having a cocktail alongside your morning fry up and ordering a pint from Spoons at 11am suddenly becomes socially acceptable.
Mimosas for breakfast, a pint with your lunch, mulled wine for supper and a boozy desert for afters is our recommended menu.
Commercialism culture can be overpowering
As good as giving (or receiving) a gift feels, it really isn't necessary to buy every single one of your friends a present. As well as being a very spenny habit, the number of gifts that end up in the bin is extraordinarily high and is a massive contribution to the world's ever-growing waste problem.
Why not try up-cycling something you own, sourcing your gifts from charity shops or paying for an activity rather than buying something tangible?
Everyone's traditions are equally valid
We've witnessed many heated discussions about the right way to roast a turkey (or chicken on a student's budget), why Elf is superior to Home Alone, and the secret to winning the coveted Christmas cracker prize.
As useful as these arguments are as dinner table entertainment, consider for a minute that everyone is going to have different traditional ways to celebrate the holidays and each should be treated with equal respect. Whether that be listening to Wham! for Christmas, lighting oil lamps for Diwali or setting out candles for Hanukkah, all can be celebrated with equally happy vibes.
Early November is TOO early for decorations and celebrations
We've said it once and we'll say it again, November 1st is far too early for any Christmas decorations, songs or treats. Christian or not, there are only so many times you can listen to the classics on repeat without getting a little bit sick of them (sorry Rudolph).
Have a little sympathy for those that don't wish to be surrounded by tinsel, trees and festive tunes for two months straight.
Your flatmates will try their best to accommodate you
As annoying as the festivities may sometimes be, it is lessened by the wholesomeness of your friends as they try their best to include you in everything. Asking about and trying to cook your religion's dishes, decorating in a way that reminds you of home or attempting to learn non-Christmas songs are some foolproof ways to share the love and and make the holidays about happiness not homesickness.