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Freaking Out About Chanukah

November 19, 2013

Talk about freaking out. The first night of Chanukah is actually before Thanksgiving. Wednesday night, November 27 is when it officially begins. That means the Jewish holiday of lights ends on December 5. December 4, is officially the last night of the celebration.

Since my Thanksgiving celebration is currently scheduled to last four days, that eats through half of the holiday that celebrates the miracle of the oil.

I know that there are a lot of people who are looking at the overlapping events and taking this as an opportunity to go hog wild (forgive the expression) with a mash-up of holiday foods. But that’s just not my style.

There is one upside.

At least I can get all of my heavy eating done in one eight day period. But that’s not entirely true, since closer to Christmas there is some kind of IAS holiday party. This year especially, we should forget the charade and just call them Christmas parties. After all, Chanukah will be a distant memory by the time most of these events take place.

I suppose the kids will also be able to busy themselves during the Thanksgiving celebration with their Chanukah presents. Plus the presence of the holiday menorahs lit with candles will make the whole thing more festive. Usually we don’t light any candles for Thanksgiving, although I’m sure there are a fixture for some holiday tables.

As of right now, I’m totally behind in getting a fresh supply of candles, not to mention presents. Don’t tell my kids, but they are probably going to score a bunch of the Rainbow Loom supplies that have been occupying much of their waking thoughts.

Fortunately, as far as Chanukah food goes, I have found a halfway decent donut shop near Trenton where I can pick up some stuffed donuts. They are different from the Israeli sufganyot, but unless any of my neighbors decide to fry up a batch of the real thing, these will be the closest that we get.

Maybe since I will be taking a more low key approach to the Thanksgiving meal this year, there will be room for potato latkes on the stove. Generally, I don’t like frying in the house. But since we’ll be leaving for Connecticut, maybe it wouldn’t be so bad (you know, providing we left the windows open a crack while we we’re gone).

Regardless, I’ll be kind of glad to get all of my holiday shopping done before Black Friday. And I’ll have no reason whatsoever to participate in the horrifying new ritual of shopping on Thanksgiving day itself.

My God, what has become of us. I guess when you make the holiday all about food, and then eliminate the act of cooking from most people’s everyday lives, there really is nothing else left but commerce. Well, that and college football. But, as far as I’m concerned, that’s not much better.

One Comment leave one →
  1. November 19, 2013 3:28 pm

    It’s panic for all of us non-Jews who like to be on top of things, too — I need to go pick up my cards and make sure the ones for my Jewish friends get in the mail, pronto!

    Also, re: holiday parties, Yule/Solstice is a holiday, too, and that always falls near the end of the month.

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