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Festivus for the Rest of Us

Festivus for the Rest of Us

You can thank Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David for manhands, double dipping, Newman and "The Contest." (If you don't understand those references, I'm not sure I can help you through the rest of this post.)

You can also thank them for Festivus, the holiday dreamed up by Frank Costanza on that infamous "Seinfeld" episode. But it's not just a funny sitcom holiday. Many people actually honor the day and guess what? It happens to be today! (OK, for people who still don't know what I'm talking about, check out this YouTube video.) So get out your poles and your list of grievances because it's time to honor Festivus for the rest of us!

I can hear you saying it now, "This isn't a real holiday. It's a joke." Not so, says devoted Festivus followers. ''Christmas is a holiday built around the birth of Christ,'' says Allen Salkin, author of Festivus: the Holiday for the Rest of Us, tells the Miami Herald. ``But certainly there were no Christmas trees in Jerusalem. Kwanzaa was created in what, 1966? That's real. So I don't get what isn't real about families who chose to put up a pole and celebrate feats of strength and air grievances. It's quirky. But that's what we do with holidays—make them personal by adding quirky touches.''

Though many may be confused by this "holiday" (held on December 23rd every year), the two things you need to know is that it's not religious and it doesn't exclude anyone. It may be a weird way to celebrate your spirituality, but hey, no one's judging!

If you're interested in celebrating tonight, here's a guide to the proper traditions.

FESTIVUS POLE: As Frank says in the "Seinfeld" episode, it's great because you don't have to decorate it, and tinsel is distracting. Aluminum is best.

AIRING OF GRIEVANCES:
Gather your family and just unload why each of them has dissapointed you over the year. Everyone gets a turn to air grievances.

FEATS OF STRENGTH:
The holiday isn't over until the head of the house is pinned in a wrestling match. Or you could just agree that it's over.

Will you be celebrating Festivus tonight?

—Elizabeth Mayo

Posted: 12/23/08
aliciak

I seriously want to start this tradition in my family!

  • By aliciak
  • on 12/25/08 12:25 AM EST
alegria

I don't know how I missed that episode, but I've always loved the idea of festivus. I wish George Costanza could come to my house and hang out with me. :)

  • By alegria
  • on 12/23/08 9:04 PM EST
LMAYO9

My husband is very fond of the airing of the grievances. He always yells like Frank Costanza...."I GOT A LOT OF PROBLEMS WITH YOU PEOPLE."

  • By LMAYO9
  • on 12/23/08 3:09 PM EST
letitgo

The airing of grievances happens anyway, so why not go with it.

  • By letitgo
  • on 12/23/08 12:33 PM EST
Kiki76

Haha. I love that you posted this. Festivus is a valid celebration...why not?

  • By Kiki76
  • on 12/23/08 12:27 PM EST