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Thread: Where is the holiday spirit?

  1. #1
    Heroic Warrior
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    Where is the holiday spirit?

    "Happy Holidays!"

    That's what we're supposed to be thinking right now, right? Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Season's Greetings... Thoughts of joy and love and well-wishes for family, friends and even strangers.

    So where is all of this holiday spirit among us collectors? I don't know if it's just me and my expectations about the basic nature of the human spirit and how that should shine through at this time of the year... But I have to say I'm actually feeling more than a little frustrated and sickened by some of the things I've seen people posting in the past couple of days. Selfish, petty things that one would think, coming from a group of people whose hobby revolves around toys and should therefore be happy at this one time of year where it's "publicly okay" for everyone to enjoy toys, just don't make sense.

    Backers of the 4H Gothitropolis Ravens have been finding out just how much hard work goes into producing a toy line, with production delays including a change of vendors, soft sculpting, incorrect scale, etc. It's been eye-opening for someone who isn't part of the industry, and it really shows you that anything can happen when producing a line of toys. Honestly, it surprises me that our beloved MOTUC line hasn't had more schedule misses along the way, considering the monthly production schedule for new figures.

    Anyway, after all of the delays the figures arrived and the 4H started to ship them out last week... A mere two weeks before Christmas. In their announcement that shipping was commencing in waves over the next few business days, they shared that the decision was made to ship domestic orders first due to the complexity and extra handling time required for customs with international shipments, especially since they don't have a whole distribution channel like DR or Amazon or some other. My initial thought, perhaps naively, is that this makes sense; international orders take longer to process and would, in most cases, not arrive before Christmas and would delay domestic orders beyond Christmas as part of a domino effect. So, why not go ahead and ship domestic orders first so at least someone has a decent chance of getting their items before Christmas...

    Well, instead, you have posts from a couple of domestic people clamoring impatiently to know where their order is because "I've been waiting over a year" (as if none of the other backers have been waiting that long) and a couple of international customers claiming conspiracy against non-US customers, treating them as if they don't exist, saying that because of the lengthier processing times for international orders they should be processed before domestic orders. It makes me wonder if a small local (to the international location) business had 1500+ orders to process and ship out two weeks before Christmas, would those folks in UK or France or Germany or Argentina expect the company to ship to everyone outside of the country first?

    Then here on MOTUC, our poor December subscription orders have been delayed... There's a dock worker situation going on that may not be making national headlines (after all, there's nobody being killed in this situation although, based on some people's posts on this very forum, some folks would like to see that changed... check out the headline "Riot ensues over delayed toys at Christmas; none of the rioters were children, but rather childish in their behavior") but it's still there.

    And, more important than whether or not we as consumers are getting up-to-the-minute updates about where "our precious" is, it is actually impacting people's livelihoods. Forget Mattel (largest toy company in the world) and our desire to get our hot little (or not so little, after all we are adults even when we don't act like it) hands on these toys; small businesses who depend on items coming through the docks are seeing their bottom line take real hits. And how many of us know what the life and well-being of a dock worker is like with their current pay? Families are likely being impacted by these drawn-out negotiations.

    But none of that matters, really, because in the true spirit of the holidays, it's more important to focus on what you are (or aren't) getting when you want (now). After all, no person is more important than the person reading this right now... as long as that person is happy, who cares about the hardships others may be facing. If the person reading this isn't getting something when they want it, better to be bitter and resentful in the true spirit of the holidays rather than be happy for those who are getting things. Or better still, let's be bitter and resentful about not getting our piece of plastic and ignore the fact that there are people around who care about us and are happy to have us around (although Lord knows why with the way we behave).

    So, for those of you who are truly enjoying the spirit of the holiday, I say bless you. If this is your first Christmas or Hanukkah with a new family member and that makes you more excited than anything else, bless you and your family. If this looks to be your last Christmas or Hanukkah with a family member, bless you and your family. If this is your first Christmas or Hanukkah without a family member, bless you and your family.

    And even those who take issue with my post, whether because you feel I'm downplaying a long string of wrongs done to you by the nasty old toy company, or because maybe you see a spark of truth in what I say and hate it being pointed out, or whatever the reason you want to get upset... bless you and your family, too.

    I wish nothing but the best and happiest of holidays for all of you, and I hope you can take even the tiniest fraction of a moment to forget about the grief toy collecting causes and enjoy this time, enjoy your family, enjoy your friends... Embrace whatever small or large spark of joy and peace you can find in your life. The toys will still be there (or be on their way) tomorrow, next week, next year, but family and friends and loved ones may not be. Celebrate the love of the holidays, share in the spirit of being together.

    Ask yourself, as you look at how you react to anything this time of year... "where is the holiday spirit?"

    And try to find the answer in yourself.

    So with my rant over, whether you found this frustrating, sappy, timely, or whatever... Happy holidays and bless you all!

  2. #2
    Merry Christmas Everyone! MOTU_Maniac's Avatar
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    I am full of Christmas spirit. I love this magical time of year. I love the lights, the sounds, the giving/friendly spirit, and my beliefs as to the reason for it all.

    I am blessed beyond measure this Christmas because I am warm, I am safe, I am healthy, and I am loved. What else could I possibly yearn for?

    Merry Christmas everyone.
    In the bleak midwinter, frosty wind made moan,
    Earth stood hard as iron, water like a stone;
    Snow had fallen, snow on snow, snow on snow,
    In the bleak midwinter, long ago...
    ...a stable place sufficed.

    What can I give Him, poor as I am?
    If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb;
    If I were a Wise Man, I would do my part;
    Yet what can I give Him?....[I can] give my heart.

  3. #3
    Master of New Adventures!
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    The spirit of Christmas -- for both believers and those who would just celebrate the birth of a man who put forth ideas about love and peace -- resides within each of us. For those that do not have it within them, their lot in life is to awaken each day and be themselves, filled with poison, malaise and enmity. Our reward is that we get to be us. I pray for them that they may some day know the joy -- theology aside -- that comes from having love and the desire for peace within one's heart.

  4. #4
    Drinking Innocence TheDeviot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heeeere's Olesker! View Post
    The spirit of Christmas -- for both believers and those who would just celebrate the birth of a man who put forth ideas about love and peace -- resides within each of us. For those that do not have it within them, their lot in life is to awaken each day and be themselves, filled with poison, malaise and enmity. Our reward is that we get to be us. I pray for them that they may some day know the joy -- theology aside -- that comes from having love and the desire for peace within one's heart.
    I don't think it's a lack of the spirit of Christmas so much as it is that things are not very good out there. People are worried about their finances, job security seems to be a thing of the past. People are having hours cut or getting laid off, and can't pay their rent or mortgage. Then you have all kinds of upheaval going on in the world. Everyone is just taking it one day at a time. I don't suspect next year will be much better. People feel depressed, and uncertain. It's not to say that nobody feels anything positive, but the dire straits are overwhelming to a growing number of people. All you can do is try to be there for people, give what you can, and hope that if you find yourself in a similar situation down the road that others might do the same for you. That, and count your blessings. Nobody really does that enough. We all get wowed by the cool new toy, game, book, or film to escape with for awhile. We take our families, spouses, friends, and people for granted at times, and forget we aren't going to have it all forever. I'm not saying be doom, and gloom this season. You should want to be happy, and joyous. But understand why so many aren't so joyous. Try to bring them a little bit of joy, let them know someone cares, and is willing to help out in their time of need. That, and try to forgive people who hurt you. The biggest gift of Christmas is forgiveness.
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  5. #5
    Heroic Warrior goluphi's Avatar
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    Great post! You've articulated perfectly a lot of what's been on my mind.
    Hey, if you want to wallow in the negative, go nuts. Sure, things arenít absolutely perfect, and people passionate about a property can get all keyed up about things. But I donít collect toys to be miserable. So Iíd rather think about the things that do excite me
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  6. #6
    Shezar-Illumina-Crita fan The All American's Avatar
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    mjharwood, it is an internet forum. People will issue their grievances and frustrations. They are entitled to it, and deserve to say it. And it being the holidays isn't an excuse to give a pass on those things, but....

    I think the main issue is lack of tact and the manner in which some say things. In my opinion, Christmas and the holidays shouldn't be a time when we give a temporary reprieve to being disgruntled, it should be the start. The start where we change and better ourselves for good. Maybe think about how when we say things, how it might intentionally or unintentionally come across as attacking or as a downer. Use tact. Maybe this time of the year is a good (or convenient) time to do it?

    If Scrooge went back to being a sourpuss after the holidays, he really learned nothing. I've heard the saying, "be the change you want to be in the world." Maybe that can happen. We can lighten up and enjoy collecting and interacting more. That doesn't give bad practice a pass, those things should not be ignored (like when we get Digitally Rivered, lol), but, we should probably share our grievances in a more tactful and thoughtful manner.

    This is a season where we can make ourselves better now and throughout the coming year(s). Merry Christmas!

  7. #7
    Master of New Adventures!
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    This is unquestionably one of the most - if not the most -- articulate, incisive and spot on posts I've seen in my years on the board. I believe in one post you have summed up -- objectively, dispassionately and yet somehow at the same time also passionately -- the state of the world. This is a post for the ages. Someone put it into a time capsule for future generations.

    Kudos and props. Well done...well done, indeed.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheDeviot View Post
    I don't think it's a lack of the spirit of Christmas so much as it is that things are not very good out there. People are worried about their finances, job security seems to be a thing of the past. People are having hours cut or getting laid off, and can't pay their rent or mortgage. Then you have all kinds of upheaval going on in the world. Everyone is just taking it one day at a time. I don't suspect next year will be much better. People feel depressed, and uncertain. It's not to say that nobody feels anything positive, but the dire straits are overwhelming to a growing number of people. All yoo is try to be there for people, give what you can, and hope that if you find yourself in a similar situation down the road that others might do the same for you. That, and count your blessings. Nobody really does that enough. We all get wowed by the cool new toy, game, book, or film to escape with for awhile. We take our families, spouses, friends, and people for granted at times, and forget we aren't going to have it all forever. I'm not saying be doom, and gloom this season. You should want to be happy, and joyous. But understand why so many aren't so joyous. Try to bring them a little bit of joy, let them know someone cares, and is willing to help out in their time of need. That, and try to forgive people who hurt you. The biggest gift of Christmas is forgiveness.
    Last edited by Heeeere's Olesker!; Yesterday at 11:47pm.

  8. #8
    Heroic Warrior Ridureyu's Avatar
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    I am flying out to see my Dad on Saturday, And I couldn't be more excited! But then, I also celebrate both Hanukkah and Christmas, have decorated the house with lights and the McFarlane frosty, and sing along with Christmas Carols in the car, so I might be a little too jolly.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ridureyu View Post
    I am flying out to see my Dad on Saturday, And I couldn't be more excited! But then, I also celebrate both Hanukkah and Christmas, have decorated the house with lights and the McFarlane frosty, and sing along with Christmas Carols in the car, so I might be a little too jolly.
    I was putting up yet more Christmas lights outside while I was on a conference call with folks in India and Australia... We may be tied for jolliness!

  10. #10
    Merry Christmas Everyone! MOTU_Maniac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mjharwood View Post
    We may be tied for jolliness!
    Make that 3 of us.
    In the bleak midwinter, frosty wind made moan,
    Earth stood hard as iron, water like a stone;
    Snow had fallen, snow on snow, snow on snow,
    In the bleak midwinter, long ago...
    ...a stable place sufficed.

    What can I give Him, poor as I am?
    If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb;
    If I were a Wise Man, I would do my part;
    Yet what can I give Him?....[I can] give my heart.

  11. #11
    Heroic Warrior
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    You do get xmas and new year fatigue as you get older, i guess.

  12. #12
    Clown Prince of Darkness Benedict Judas Hel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mjharwood View Post
    Where is the holiday spirit?
    Maybe it had a run-in with the Ghostbusters?

    "Wheresoever on earth he dwells, man is prey to two weaknesses: the need to pray and the need to love."-Marquis de Sade

    "It is not by reasoning or by our understanding that we have received our religion; it is by external authority and command."-Michel De Montaigne

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  13. #13
    Grammer Flunky Shredder's Avatar
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    I havn't felt much christmas spirit, let alone anything in years. Between my state of affairs, other people's state of affairs being pushed on me, and in general alot of life negativity (one of those, no matter what you do, someone's always mad type things), it's just hard to be positive anywhere, let alone around christmas. one of the most over rated holidays ever created.
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  14. #14
    Heroic Master of Puzzles Thatman's Avatar
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    I find it gets tougher to enjoy the season when people seem *determined* to be miserable.

    If people don't feel like 'making merry', so be it, no one is forcing them. But I've reached a point in my life where it's much easier to tune out the "bahhumbuggers". Don't need 'em.

    My family really didn't have much in the way of Christmas from 2008 through 2011; long story, not sharing. But for the past two years, we've been trying to get it back, and I feel much happier because of it. Christmas has always been a wonderful time of year, my favorite holiday, and the source of a great deal of happiness in my life. Yes, there have been many years when it's been tinged (or filled, even) with sadness - but somehow, it always comes back.
    "That's very interesting...but silly."

  15. #15
    Born A Monster wolfsfang's Avatar
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    I had some holiday spirit but I misplaced it years ago
    Take a look at my attempts at coloring

    and if you get the chance

    Check out my Deviant Art Gallery

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