Thursday, November 01, 2007

Holidays and the Seven Deadly Sins

Halloween's a weird one for us. The shorties don't eat candy, but we feel like we're depriving them of the experience not taking them trick or treating. So they get to go door to door having friendly people give them brightly colored wrappers filled with delights they can't enjoy. Kind of like taking a eunich to a strip club. At the end of the evening, they did each get an organic peanut buttercup to try to alleviate some of the guilt and they genuinely enjoyed the experience.

But watching the amount of candy flowing into the bags and baskets, I was left shaking my head and my mind went to Kerry's seminar this semester where they are considering the seven deadly sins. Then it hit me, they are exactly what our holidays celebrate. We set aside time from our daily grind where most people work jobs they don't really like in order to afford houses that are too big and bad health insurance in order to revel in the mortal sins.

I'm not saying this is a bad thing. On one hand, I'm not convinced that the old conception of a life well lived is accurate and that these are always bad things or that they are the worst characteristics of people living badly. On the other, I think we need time to blow off steam and it's good to have social permission to let our hair down. But that being said, it's still pretty funny how well they match up.

Here's how I would map them:

Gluttony: Halloween (kids), Thanksgiving (adults)
Greed: Christmas
Lust: Valentine's Day (Halloween is moving into this slot for adults)
Sloth: Labor Day (irony can be so ironic)
Pride: July 4th
Wrath: September 11 (our newest holiday)
Envy: April 15

Then if we were to include drunkeness/acting without responsibility we could include New Year's Day, and a series of mini-New Year's days we've sprinkled through the year including, but not limited to, St. Patrick's Day, Cinco de Mayo, and Mardi Gras. Guilt would include Mother's Day and Father's Day. And intentional obliviousness, perhaps our worst collective sin in this day and age, would be surely represented by Columbus Day.

Miss any?