Happy Festivus! Fake Holiday Prompts Outpouring of Complaints

Seinfeld's non-denominational holiday promotes the "airing of grievances," and bloggers aren't passing up the chance

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On December 23rd, the quirky among us celebrate one of Seinfeld's many gifts to popular culture: Festivus! A phoney holiday fabricated by George Costanza's father, Festivus means gathering around the (bare, metal) Festivus pole for feats of strength and the airing of grievances. If you need a refresher:

Festivus is also the perfect way for bloggers to break up a slow news day, reminisce, and revel in nerdy sitcom trivia. We at the Wire had to pare down an impressive amount of commentary on the pseudo-holiday--far more than was on the $2 billion Volvo sale, and almost as much as on our Christmas countdown. It's remarkable what kind of reaction the opportunity to "air grievances" can get.

  • Festivus Is Spreading, reports Jessica Ravitz at CNN. "The Festivus faithful have gathered across the globe and have come together in places as various as seedy bars, campus squares and corporate boardrooms. Citizens, with varied degrees of success, have petitioned to raise Festivus poles beside public nativity scenes. Social networking sites and holiday-specific venues -- like festivusbook.com and festivusweb.com -- are go-to places for those who want to share the cheer, or jeers."
  • In Detroit, Plenty of Grievances to Air At the Detroit Free Press, the staff list sports complaints. "LIONS: Thanks for the victories this season, but how about breaking that road losing streak? 19 and counting. PISTONS: Where did it all go wrong?"
  • Actually, Every Sports Fan Has Grievances... writes Matt Snyder at FanHouse. FanHouse also lists sports complaints. "Everyone who thinks wins and losses define a starting pitcher or quarterback: You are all morons."
  • ...As Do Liberals Bill at the Daily Kos gives a list of liberal complaints, including: "President Obama, for not enacting my agenda fast enough...The traditional media, for another year of quoting politicians, "experts" and spokespeople without asking the fundamental question: "Are they speaking the truth, or am I being played for a sucker?" Too many times the answer is: Like a Tootsie Pop." Ron Chusid at (libertarian-leaning) Liberal Values digs up his old Festivus grievance list from the Bush era. It begins, "For Festivus this year I rant to one and all about all the ways in which George Bush has disappointed me."
  • Enjoy a Festivus Card, urges Brian Osborne at Geek.com. Festivus cards may not be available at CVS, he warns. "Luckily, if you have an iPhone it could be as close as your fingertips. The Festivus Cardz app allows users to send the right card to loved ones whether you have grievances with them or not."
  • And Traditional Festivus Eats, suggests Jacob Katel at the Miami New Times. Highlights include pork rinds, nacho cheese, and Scotch.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.