December 20, 2008

Twain on Christmas Dread

Like C.S. Lewis, Belschnickle, and many other writers, Mark Twain noted the wrongs of the annual Christmas rites. As the article in the Hartford Courants points out,

"Twain himself was of two minds on the holiday. On one hand, he wrote long letters to his daughters in the persona of St. Nick and spoke of a season of joy and peace in a letter to his wife.:

Though his wealthy family seems to have enjoyed Christmas very much, the sarcastic writer had this to say of the holiday:

"The approach of Christmas brings harassment and dread to many excellent people," he wrote. "They have to buy a cart-load of presents, and they never know what to buy to hit the various tastes; they put in three weeks of hard and anxious work, and when Christmas morning comes they are so dissatisfied with the result, and so disappointed that they want to sit down and cry. Then they give thanks that Christmas comes but once a year."

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