It’s Advent and I’m angry annoyed. (Sigh) I’ve been constructing a flaming jeremiad in my mind all weekend. What began as a peculiar oddity – a mild embarrassment -, a massive inflatable Grinch next door, grew with the addition of a huge plastic inflatable Santa across the street, and has now gathered into an avalanche of lawn kitsch. Apparently, bad taste is expanding. The cheap, plastic, lighted inflatables now come in groups: Santa bands (Santa in sunglasses, a penguin drummer, saxophone-playing reindeer, and a polar bear cradling a guitar) and Santa trains are proliferating along the block.
We had a blizzard yesterday. While the wind howled and blew the darling Santa band onto their backs, I stood at the window and prayed imprecatory psalms. This morning the deflated pieces sit in a puddle of plastic waiting for their owners to come home and blow them up. How I have longed to blow them up myself.
I’m trying to “put the best possible construction on the situation,” a phrase I learned in Bible school. My neighbors want to celebrate. They enjoy a good party. It’s just that their plastic Santas are such a cheap imitation. Who wants margarine after you’ve tasted butter? Peter Kreeft (pronounced Krayft – I have to keep reminding myself) reminded me this weekend that evil cannot create, it can only imitate.
What we find beautiful or entertaining or moving
is rooted in our spiritual life.
~ Kenneth Myers in All God’s Children and Blue Suede Shoes
Meanwhile the best antidote to the very real frustration I experience is humor. I need a way to look out the window and laugh instead of grimace. It’s just plastic, for Pete’s sake! I need to turn the music up, keep the good smells wafting, read through my collection of Advent poems, and remember it’s a season of joy.
If I can laugh at this video, thanks KGB, which slaughters a great hymn in a number of ways, I surely can laugh at the Santa Band. (Why would anyone pair Christ the Lord Is Risen Today with Amore? That is beyond the beyonds.) Any other suggestions? *A great post by Nancy Wilson relevant to the subject*