Wednesday, December 21, 2011

It's Almost Really Winter

     The Winter Solstice is nearly upon us!  It happens at 12:30 am tomorrow morning, Eastern Standard Time.  I don't have any plans for a celebration; there aren't a lot of Winter Solstice episodes of my favorite TV shows or classic Winter Solstice films.  Chances are there is some sort of pagan ritual, but I don't know what it is.  Maybe it's about sacrificing a pig at the precise moment the earth reaches its farthest distance from, and its axis reaches its maximum of 23.5degrees in relation to, the sun.  That seems bloody and gross though.
     According to a simple interwebs search, there is quite the dancing celebration at sunrise in Stonehenge.  That sounds fun.  I wonder if folks do the same thing at Carhenge. Also, the Chinese celebrate by making "glutinous balls of rice" with their families and the Japanese and Irish run crazy through the streets--in their respective countries, not just where ever they are.
    Of course, as we all know, Winter Solstice is the official first day of winter and the days start getting longer. This is nice for those of us living in the north since the sun will stay up later and later, just a bit each more each day.  Currently I think it goes down around 3 in the afternoon.  For Santa, his elves, polar bears, and narwhals, tomorrow is the day that it is dark for a full 24hours.  They'll really appreciate when the sun actually starts rising, even if only for a moment.    
     Next year's Winter Solstice is supposed to be a big one--the pesky end of the world.  It seems like we should be celebrating this year much like we did back in 1999, when we thought 2000 was the end of the world.  It'd be great if Prince could get to writing that song, 'cause this one is not good:

     Happy Winter Solstice!  I think it's a day we can all enjoy.  I suppose it's considered  pagan holiday, but it's also just a real thing that happens regardless of any particular belief system.  You can't not believe in the solstice.  That would be like not believing in the sun and that would make you crazypants.
     Yay Winter!  The days are getting longer!

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