It's that time of year again! Not quite time for decorations, presents, pies or turkeys, it's that special time that couples around the globe spend arguing over one thing: who's family gets which holiday.
I'm not a big holiday person. I celebrate three holidays a year: my birthday (who doesn't love getting presents?), halloween (which I missed out on this year), and new years (a time of new beginnings, punctuated with alcohol and fireworks.) My mom isn't big on holidays either, but wants to see us at some point in the winter months, so a few weeks ago I told my girlfriend she could pick who gets Thanksgiving and who gets Christmas. She chose Thanksgiving with her dad and Christmas with my mom. In the intervening time, people have made plans and time off requests and so on, making the matter rather set in stone.
To muddy matters more, it turns out my dad may be in Asheville (where my mom lives - my dad lives in Texas) for Christmas as well, making it a two-parents-with-one-stone kind of thing. On top of that, my girlfriend's dad's anniversary is on New Years. Plus, her family traditionally celebrates xmas on New Year's because they often can't get together for xmas.
Now, I don't know about the rest of you, but I see anniversaries as something of a private deal, a couple celebrating their coupledom, typically with flowers, jewelery, fancy meals and lots of sex - things you really don't usually share with others, particularly your kids and their partners. So, being invited to my girlfriend's dad's wedding anniversary is a little bit, well, creepy. That aside, the xmas-for-New Year's thing makes sense in a way, but seems a little unfair - I don't try to celebrate thanksgiving on valentine's day with my parents just because we didn't spend thanksgiving together. And before you knock the comparison, you should know that I see New Year's as a romantic holiday - start the year together, end the year together kind of thing.
New Year's gives you a chance to close the book on all the ills of the year past, and set the stage for all the good in the year to come. I think partying, drinking, romancing, and, of course, fireworks, do this quite well; creepiness and making up for lost time do not. Besides, Atlanta has far more impressive fireworks displays than does Roanoke, or Asheville.
Of course, it doesn't help that her whole family hates me - I'm far too liberal and godless for their tastes. One holiday a year is bad enough, especially since it's the longest holiday of the year. I'm not giving up one of the holidays I actually like.