A Jew’s Christmas


I love the lights and the wreaths and the smug sense that I don’t have to exert any effort.

Growing up, I once asked my father if we could have a tree. I didn’t really want one, I just wanted to see what he would say. He was one of the least religious people ever, but his answer was unequivocal. I never asked again. It was fine.

One year, wanting to be among Jews, I went to see Schindler’s List on Christmas Day. Another year, Dream Girls at BAM, with my kids. It was packed, and I got an insight into how Christians spend Christmas.

This year, I celebrated by having brunch with an old friend and a new friend at my favorite all-purpose drinking and dining spot, The Living Room, inside the always-festive Maidstone. At the next table, Kim Cattrall [I wasn’t going to bold anything in this post, but that is a boldface name if ever there was one] was having Xmas Day brunch with her father. She looked not a day over 35, in black pants and a black lace top, and spent a lot of time on her Blackberry.

My own efforts at holiday sentiments usually come out cheesy, but I like what my friend Jim Lüning said in his holiday e-mail: “Cheers to making new mistakes in 2010, and never repeating the old ones.” Thanks, Jim. I love going into the new year with permission to make mistakes, as long as they’re fresh and not recycled.

About cara

I blog (for fun) here at casaCARA, and write (for money) about architecture, interiors, gardens and travel for many national magazines and websites.
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3 Responses to A Jew’s Christmas

  1. Harriet Bell says:

    I, too, love the no pressure of being Jewish at Xmas! We go to my friends’ every year and all I have to do is make dessert. And there’s no exchanging of gifts because no one needs a damned thing!

    Growing up in Cincinnati, Xmas was spent at a professional basketball game (Royals with Oscar Robertson), followed by dinner at the one Chinese restaurant in town. Along with all the other Jews!

  2. Faff Around says:

    I celebrate Christmas, but have always wanted to peek into someone elses cultural and religious holidays, but have never had a chance. Christmas has become such a crazy time, I think lots of us would love to order Chinese and just have the time with family and friends.

  3. AnnaI says:

    This year we did xmas to please my PILs, but since it was a very strange “traditional” Japanese xmas dinner and none of my husband’s family members are Christian anyway, it didn’t feel very Christmasy at all.
    And about the tree – ha! we had it when I was little, but then it mysteriously disappeared when I got to be around 9 or 10.

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