ab·stract

verb
 
abˈstrakt/
  1. 1.
    consider (something) theoretically or separately from something else.

 

 

It’s that favorite time of the year…

 

I’m not sure how I got here exactly? Every year around this time becomes a clash between my personal beliefs and what is considered socially acceptable by the majority. For the start, I am not a holiday person. There I said it, out loud, in print!!! No, I’m not Muslim, nor Jehovah’s witness and I promise you I will not hit you over the head with a Jesus wasn’t born during December, he was born during Spring Break.“ type talk.  I also promise you that I am not being an “Opposite man” neither. You know that dude that likes to go opposite just for opposite sakes. That guy/woman who thinks that Nas is just an “ok” rapper, Whitney Houston couldn’t sing, and the show “This Is Us” is whack (Freakin Love that Randell went to Howard episode!!!!). I am, however; a proud Abstract. I love eating waffles on Saturday mornings while blasting my favorite random playlist that has Kendrick Lamar, Red Hot Chili Peppers and some John Coltrane in the mix. As far back as I can remember I was always someone who questioned everything. My late grandmother always said that my first word was “ball” but my favorite was “why.” In the preschool era, I frustrated my teachers and mother alike by always asking “Why” whenever I was addressed.

Teacher: “Ok children, time to sing a song”

Me: “Why?”

Mom: “Ok, it’s naptime little man.”

Me: “Why?”

I also came up in a household that didn’t have the energy to contribute to children’s fantasy.

Me age 7: “Mom, what’s a Santa Clause?”

Mom: “Oh, its some story that some folks(mostly white) tell about a fat guy that who brings kids presents for Christmas waaaaaaaay from the North Pole, but only if they’re good.”

Me age 7: “So, he’s not real?”

Mom: “Hell Naw!!! You see Mrs. Johnson’s bad ass son stay spoiled, right?!! And his bad ass stays stealing!!!”

My mother laughed and to be honest so did I. To this day I’ve never been quite sure if that was the moment where my mother planted or simply watered the abstract seed within my DNA.

Now I want you to know that never have I in the past or present made a habit to force my truth on someone else’s life. I was never allowed as a kid to tell fellow classmates that Santa Clause, Easter Bunny, and Tooth Fairy were not real. “You gotta let people live how they wanna believe.” Is what grandma used to say and I carried that statement well into adulthood.

My choice to not really dig holidays have always been a mixture of political, personal and a dash of plain old don’t really vibe with it. However; call me a hypocrite if you must because I surely when presented the opportunity enjoy the days off work and food to eat. My appetite and leisure choices have always been bipartisan. I also understood that the outside world was different from my progressive childhood. Where my family did away with certain holiday traditions as we grew with knowledge gained, I was understood that others still carried a torch for those bright and pretty green Christmas trees. I made a personal promise knowing that I may always be the minority to never allow my stance to make me bitter, unfortunately, at times it made me naïve. As each day passes and people become more WOKE I was foolishly under the impression that folks would respect my practices as I did theirs. Such a silly rabbit I can be.

“So did you have horrible Christmases?!!”

“Are you sad?

“Did somebody die?”

“Oh, I’m sorry to hear that you had a sad upbringing.”

“Oh, so you don’t believe in God?!!”

 Yea, these are just a small sample of statements/questions I’ve gotten over the years which sometimes I take with a grain of salt or sometimes I disguise my annoyance with a plain simple smile and added head nod.

The crazy thing is if you tell folks your reason for not digging holidays is faith driven they tend to leave you be.

Ex. 1

Them: “A yo, you celebrate Christmas?”

Me: “No, I’m Muslim.”

Them: “Oh Ok, that’s what’s up.”

 

Ex.2

 Them:A yo, you celebrate Christmas?”

Me: “Nah, just not my thing.”

Them:DAMN Nigga!!! Fuck wrong you?!! You atheist?!! Don’t believe in Jesus, my nigga?!!

 So, in other words, most folks would rather respect a God that they do not worship rather than their own friend’s personal choice.

For years I would keep my opinion to myself because I didn’t want to be Grinch for anybody’s holiday but the opposition always seem to be drawn to me like Bees to honey. Whether it’s an office holiday party or a friend’s holiday gathering somehow certain alleged WOKE folks would gather to have an intentional WOKE conversation and hit me with their first WOKE question. I’ve tried to keep my response pleasant and light-hearted but alas there’s always some traditional Ebony magazine cover brother who hit me with the “Well holidays are for family and FAMILY is everything!!!” It’s as if they assume I’m too busy watching Game of Thrones marathon to start a family which makes me allegedly soulless.

My vibe is my own and I accept what comes with it. As a full-grown adult, I continue to practice the art of forcing my lowkey introverted ways to not come off as an insult like a Mike Tyson infamous ring stare down. Still, it doesn’t stop the covert insult type commentary eyeball I get every time I walk past the Valentine day card section in February. I’m not heartless nor do I bite, pout, bark, or scream “Get Off My Lawn!!!” whenever I hear Jingle Bells. I express my feelings for loved ones and show compassion to strangers daily as much as possible. So please, try not to picture me as a long-haired wizard looking ghoul who sits on the mountaintop throwing evil shade lightning bolts and I’ll not look at you stupid for once believing Christmas’ Eve night mommy was caught kissing jolly St. Nick instead of the reality of it being your dad’s buddy from work.

J.Hall

@jhallradio

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