If you find tinsel distracting, or if you are looking for a holiday that is a little . . . out there, Festivus might just be for you!
Festivus was created by Dan O’Keefe, a writer on the 90s sitcom Seinfeld, based on an actual holiday tradition celebrated by his family. Festivus – the holiday for the rest of us – was brought to life by the cantankerous character Frank Costanza in the Seinfeld holiday episode The Strike, which first aired December 18, 1997.
Many Christmases ago, I went to buy a doll for my son. I reached for the last one they had, but so did another man. As I rained blows upon him, I realized there had to be another way. – Frank Costanza
For the Festivus newcomers out there, here are the basic practices:
Festivus begins by displaying an aluminum pole, “very high strength-to-weight ratio,” says Frank. As this is a non-religious and non-commercial holiday alternative the Festivus Pole need not be adorned with decoration.
Your family and friends should then sit down for Festivus dinner, a meal featuring non-holiday comfort food. The moment dinner is served, the “Airing of Grievances” should begin. This is your opportunity to admit your rage, disappointment and frustration with your kin with no repercussions.
Immediately following dinner, the head of the family chooses one participant on which to test his or her strength. Festivus is not considered over until the head of the family has been pinned to the ground. The selected participant is allowed to decline the attempt to pin the head of the family – but only if they have something better to do instead . . . like visit RetroFestive.ca for Festivus finds!