Miscellaneous Monday

Monday, April 21, 2014

Who let the dogs out

Having a young adolescent dog is far more time-consuming and tiring than having a senior dog. Especially an adolescent dog who has developed some bad habits that need to be corrected. If you need us, we'll be dazed and confused on the couch, mumbling, "Jackson, no!"

Fringe benefits

Have I mentioned how much I'm enjoying the fringe benefits that come with my support of my employer's accounts in Southern California? Well, I am. I've seen more of the Mechanickys this past year than any other since I left San Diego for Denver in 1995. I LERVE that about my job.

Happy Easter?

As I'm sure you all know, Easter was yesterday. And Easter is a weird holiday for me. Because Easter is a Christian holiday in a way that Christmas isn't. Christmas is the Christian version of the mid-winter festival, which is also celebrated by many other communities for different reasons. And while Easter also has Pagan roots and symbolism (see: Ishtar and Eostre), Easter's status as a co-opted Pagan holiday by Christianity is not as well-known or internalized by our culture as Christmas. So it baffles me when people who know I'm an Atheist ask me what I'm doing for Easter. "Ignoring it" doesn't seem like a very courteous response (even though it's true), but pointing out the Christian entitlement inherent in such a question isn't appropriate either. Most Christians who ask this question don't mean it a negative way, and in fact are attempting to be inclusive. Since I have no desire to be an Atheist Asshole, my current strategy is just to dodge the question and move along smartly.

I'd be interested in how the other Atheists who hang around here handle this, as well as my Christian readers' thoughts on the subject.

6 comments:

MAW said...

re: Easter -- as a fellow non-observer, I usually just shrug, smile and say I'll be doing my usual chores or watching a movie, just as if they'd asked what my general weekend plans are. But it does sometimes feel a little weird, especially if they follow up by seeming concerned that I don't have somewhere to be (as I would be if someone didn't have a place to go for Thanksgiving).

vince said...

As a Christian, if I'm asking it of a non-Christian friend, it generally means "are you going anywhere to visit family or is any family coming to visit you", as that happens fairly regularly with non-Christian friends. Also, many of them have young kids and do the whole Easter-egg/Easter-basket thing.

And I feel your pain with a young, adolescent dog. Our new cat is also an adolescent, and he currently is being a night-owl and wanting to play and be petted only at night after we've gone to bed.

Phiala said...

You've SEEN our commentary about Trygvi, I know it. You were warned!

This atheist uses Easter as an excuse to cook delicious things. I like to cook, but usually I don't make the time. I also have a lingering desire to do something to celebrate spring, and Easter is as good a time as any.

David said...

I find that "eating chocolate" is a good response for Christians and non-Christians alike, as it provides an agreeable answer that acknowledges the friendly interest and still allows you to avoid any theological disputes. While they laugh it's easy to change the topic.

My basic attitude toward any holiday is to try to enjoy it, whether it fits into my faith or not. Why am I not allowed to have a grand Diwali just because I'm Christian? And if someone asks me how I plan to celebrate it (which has happened), I'm okay with that.

I am not the standard model for anything, though, so YMMV.

Carol Elaine said...

As a not-atheist who was raised Christian and opted to not follow the rest of my family down the Uber-Christian road, I got together with a non-Easter-observing couple of friends for meals, talking and moderate hiking.

Meanwhile, my best friend - whose family are Reform Jews - managed to eat more Easter candy than I did. BTW, when I was in Tucson, I tried chocolate matzah. It needed less chocolate and more matzah.

Unknown said...

In Catholic France, people will start wishing you a happy Easter as early as Friday. "Do they remember their cathechesim?" I asked my husband when he told me this. "Do they know what happened on Good Friday?"
In short, I agree with Phiala aand David, though.