A Christmas Carol

6 12, 2017

Christmas Vocabulary – Bah, Humbug!

By |2017-12-03T15:44:13-06:00December 6th, 2017|Wednesday Words|1 Comment

Christmas comes with its own vocabulary. I thought it’d be fun to share the origin and meaning of some of the more popular phrases like this one.

Who wants to hear this phrase, which means disgust for the Christmas season?

Not me.

The phrase comes from Charles Dickens’ mean-spirited main character, Ebenezer Scrooge, who made the expression famous in A Christmas Carol.

We used to be hear those words around our house whenever the Christmas storage boxes came out and then the phrase reappeared when we undecorated and refilled the boxes back up.

One year when all the children we still at home and I was getting lots of bah, humbugs, I found the delightful little door knocker pictured above.

You press the ring, and it says bah, humbug in such a funny voice that you can’t keep from laughing aloud. Wish you could hear it I promise you would giggle.

I hung Scrooge in a prominent place and established the Bah, Humbug Rule. Instead of voicing the words, you had to press the knocker.

Infectious laughter quickly replaced the grumpy words.

Poor Scrooge got lots of use while all the children were home not so much because they felt disgust for the holiday, but more to share the laughter. That first year, I think we had to replace the batteries twice.

I continue to hang him every year for the same reason. He brings back fond memories and he makes me laugh.

28 12, 2016

Honoring Christmas

By |2016-11-27T20:39:19-06:00December 28th, 2016|Holidays, Wednesday Words of Wisdom|0 Comments

christmas5Today’s words of wisdom come from the novella Charles Dickens wrote in December 1843.

Dickens also published two other Christmas stories, but A Christmas Carol was by far the most popular having never been out of print. It’s also been adapted many times to film, stage, opera, and other media.

Dickens divided his novella into five chapters, labeled “staves” or song stanzas or verses, in keeping with the title of the book. The short tale of Ebenezer Scrooge’s strange night visitors continues to send a message that cuts through all the trappings of the season and straight into the heart and soul of the holiday.

Dickens described Christmas as “a good time: a kind, forgiving, charitable, pleasant time: the only time I know of in the long calendar of the year, when men and women seem by one consent to open their shut-up hearts freely, and to think of other people below them as if they really were fellow-passengers to the grave, and not another race of creatures bound on other journeys.”

This description became known as the “Carol Philosophy” and Dickens strove to live accordingly for the rest of his life.

Wouldn’t honoring Christmas by opening shut-hearts and thinking of others as fellow-sojourners on the same path, not another race of creatures, be an excellent way to end this holiday season and begin the new year?

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