Juxtaposition of Two Christmases

Christmas is one the happiest times of the year. Actually, I guess the song says “It’s the most wonderful time of the year.” It’s a time for giving. It’s a time for family, charity, and kindness toward others. And yes, it’s also a time for us to all gather around the tree Christmas morning and exchange gifts.

But what happens if the gifts aren’t there to exchange? What happens if it’s not up to Santa? What happens if, for instance, a delivery company doesn’t get them there on time?

Well, that’s exactly what’s happened to possibly tens of thousands of Americans this holiday season, as package delivery giant FedEx admitted they were not able to absolutely, positively get there. FedEx guarantees on time delivery, but for many customers, it could not make good on that guarantee. Many of the delays were due to severe weather across the Southeast, but FedEx is also blaming a flood of last minute shoppers.

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Okay, so thousands of packages didn’t get to be opened on Christmas day. Considering FedEx estimated deliveries between black Friday and December 25th to be about 317 million, that’s really not bad. And as I said – this is the season of love and giving and understanding – right?

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Not for many in today’s self-centered, self-important, consumer-centric America. It’s all about the presents and nothing else. A flood of angry people took to Twitter to whine and blame FedEx for “ruining” their Christmas.

One tweeter lovingly wrote: “Thanks for DELAYING my package and now I don’t have them for Xmas! You SUCK! #worstdeliveryserviceever.” Another expressed: “@FedEx just ruined my 10 year old cousins first xmas in nyc… Thanks.” There were hundreds and hundreds of these loving sentiments. My personal favorite was: “Thanks to @FedEx we’ll be one gift short for Joseph’s first christmas!”

Really people! FedEx “ruined” your Christmas? You’re ONE gift short for a one year old child who won’t give a rats butt because he couldn’t possibly understand what’s even going on. Really? We all know it’s not really about the gifts, or the recipient of said gift(s). It’s all about the giver. It’s all about saving face in front of family and friends or getting the phony hero badge for best gift. These people don’t want their families to know what slugs they are by waiting until the last second to order a gift. Wow – what a loss. They were short maybe one or two gifts that will eventually get there.  

And to the woman who snidely thanked FedEx for “delaying” her package. Did she ever give a single thought that just maybe it was delayed because tornadoes were busy ripping through the south – torrential downpours, causing floods and mudslides, were busy destroying everything in their path? While egotistical, self-centered brats were fretting over presents for infants, others were literally fighting for their lives, and many didn’t win the battle. 

At last count, 14 people lost their lives due to the Christmas storms. While some were busy whining on Twitter, others were grateful just to be alive. In Mississippi, Tennessee, and Arkansas, houses were completely destroyed by tornadoes. Inches of rain caused flooding and mudslides in Alabama and Georgia. A ten-year-old boy in Mississippi was trapped in a car. A tornado picked up the vehicle and swept it away, like a scene from a disaster movie.

“Barbara Perkins and her husband were hunkered down inside a closet when violent winds peeled the roof off their Mississippi home. The storm sucked the central air conditioning unit beside the couple straight up from the floor and into the howling sky. Many of their belongings had been thrown hundreds of feet away into the woods. Newly homeless, Perkins said she was happy just to be alive – especially after learning two of her neighbors had died in the storm. ‘You kind of stop and realize what Christmas is all about,’ Perkins said.”

Amen, Mrs. Perkins! Say a prayer for those who have lost everything this Christmas, including their lives and the loved ones they’ve left behind.

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