O Me of Little Faith

O Me of Little Faith

2010 Christmas Best/Worst List

I posted a best/worst Christmas list last year and have decided to do another one for this year…but with all-new, culturally relevant bests and worsts. The long wait is over, friends.


Best update of How the Grinch Stole Christmas:
Sue Sylvester on this year’s Christmas episode of Glee.

Worst update of How the Grinch Stole Christmas:
How the Grinch Stole Christmas, starring Jim Carrey


Best Christmas decorating trend:
Simple white lights. Always tasteful.

Worst Christmas decorating trend:
Reindeer antlers and a red nose for your car. It’s bad enough that the Grinch did it to his dog. Please don’t do it to your Subaru Forester.


Best Christmas ornament:
One your child made in preschool, preferably with his or her face on it.

Worst Christmas ornament:
One that replaces the traditional nativity figures with snowmen, bears, owls, or other collectibles. I’ll take my Jesus fully human, please.


Best Rankin-Bass stop-motion holiday special:
Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer. Hermey, The Abominable, the Island of Misfit Toys, FTW!

Worst Rankin-Bass stop-motion holiday special:
Nestor, the Long-Eared Christmas Donkey. I am calling for a moratorium on stories about humble animals and/or trees who somehow find their significance by becoming part of the Christmas story. There’s enough inspiration in the story itself without adding domestic animals or vegetation to it.


Best Santa Claus Origins Story:
The life of St. Nicholas, bishop of Myra

Worst Santa Claus Origins Story:
The Santa Clause Trilogy

Best Christmas Album:
Depending on my mood, it could be one of three. Behold the Lamb of God (Andrew Peterson), Noel (Derri Daughterty, Steve Hindalong & Friends), or Songs for Christmas (Sufjan Stevens). Go ahead and mock me for my hipsterish ways, but that Sufjan Christmas album is awesome.

Worst Christmas Album:
Christmas on Death Row, by various Death Row records artists. I’m no rap hater, but when Christmas rolls around, I’m not looking for gangsta lyrics by Snoop-Dogg about Santa’s difficulties delivering gifts in the ghetto. I’m just not. Also, the words “Silent Night [Explicit]” should never appear together, ever.


Best Christmas Cultural Trend:
Concern for the poor.

Worst Christmas Cultural Trend:
Concern for whether or not a retail establishment says “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Holidays.”


Your turn. Submit your favorite Best/Worst Christmas combination. Or argue with mine. Unless your argument is about the validity of Christmas on Death Row, in which case: don’t bother. For shizzle.

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Charlie Chang

posted December 13, 2010 at 10:03 am

My list is here.
But I’ll copy and paste.
For starters, the world didn’t end. The rapture hasn’t occurred and nobody is left behind…yet. Zombies haven’t taken over the world nor have the robots from Skynet begun their termination of humans.
Books: A couple of books that I read and have really stood out to me was Ignore everybody and 39 other keys to creativity and Stop acting rich. If you really want to be challenged at your workplace read Indispensable by Seth Godin.
Movies: The best movie that I’ve seen this year was Social Network. It’s a great story of how successful you can be when you really have a passion and love for what you do.
The worst movie? Karate Kid. This movie was terrible. It was for middle schoolers. The scene where he took his violin playing girlfriend and they went frolicking through China was like watching those stupid “Don’t talk to strangers” film strips from 6th grade. I’d rather have my gums scrapped.
The Dark Knight is growing on me. I got the blu ray version on Black Friday from Amazon for only $5. The crispness and clarity of the picture is delightful and wonderful and atomic.
Blogs: The blogs that have encouraged me the most have come from Jason Boyett’s site regarding doubt, faith, honesty, and life. The best humor blogs have come from Matthew Paul Turner’s site. And the Serious Wednesday posts from Stuff Christians Like are awesome and lets me know God is with me.
News: Westboro Baptist Church still hates everyone not like them and continues to protest against things that aren’t even offensive. They still hate Lady Gaga, gays, and puppies.
BP oil spill what?
In regards to real estate, it’s still a great time to buy a house. Recession, what? What recession? Because Christmas shopping and sales are up about 8% from last year.
Of course one of the best things this year was that Caleb was born in April. And by Christmas he’ll be 8 months old. Time flies when you’re cleaning spit up.

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Travis Mamone

posted December 13, 2010 at 10:17 am

Yeah, “Nester” was pretty crappy. That’s when Rankin and Bass started running out of steam. “Cricket on the Hearth” was pretty lame, too.

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shawn smucker

posted December 13, 2010 at 11:26 am

My current favorite family tradition: waiting to wrap all the gifts until Christmas Eve.
My least favorite family tradition: going to Target as early as possible on Black Friday. This tradition is not going to end well.

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Charlie's Church of Christ

posted December 13, 2010 at 12:21 pm

Best & Worst holiday coffee drinks:
Best: Peppermint Mocha – I’ll be making these all year long
Worst: Eggnong Latte – let’s be honest, the Eggnog does not compliment the espresso, and dude, eggnog will you kill you if you’re not careful.

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posted December 13, 2010 at 1:29 pm In case you wanted to report a business that doesn’t say “Merry Christmas” The most ridiculous and embarrassing thing of this decade!

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Matt @ The Church of No People

posted December 13, 2010 at 2:31 pm

I’ve actually only seen one red nose on a Lincoln SUV. It was kind of humorous. No antlers. I would say best holiday advertising belongs to Acura – “The Season of Reason” is good. Worse belongs to Target. That woman is like “Flo” on the Progressive commercials, but on crack. Terrible.

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posted December 13, 2010 at 10:28 pm

As a cashier at a very well known retail establishment, I refuse to say “Happy Holidays” and will wait until one of my customers says “Merry Christmas” before I wish them the same. The last place I cashiered at one of my cashiers (I was a supervisor) chewed me out because apparently I was supposed to know she was Jewish and inadvertently wished her a Merry Christmas. Oops.

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posted December 14, 2010 at 9:37 am

Best gift giving trend: the growing number of people who are redirecting some/all of their gift money towards charitable organizations or others in need.
Worst gift giving trend: the Walmart parking lot between black Friday and Christmas day.

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posted December 14, 2010 at 9:40 am

I forgot to add that yesterday I spotted one of our city buses with the reindeer antlers and red nose. Seriously. It makes the Subaru Forester scenario seem more acceptable somehow.

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Jay Sauser

posted December 14, 2010 at 3:46 pm

Best Christmas Present Game: Guessing what is inside the box with your name on it.
Worst Christmas Present Game: Guessing if the rank smell is from the new baby’s diaper or Grandpa Al’s Depends.

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posted December 14, 2010 at 3:51 pm

Recently saw a Charlie Brown cartoon “I want a dog for Christmas” I thought this was going be a prequel of how Charlie got Snoopy. I was also told that the voice of Snoopy was going to be played by the same actor that played young Anakin in the Phantom Menace. I here prequels are his jam. None of this turned out to be right. It was actually about a character named ReRun (not from What’s Happening).

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posted December 26, 2010 at 5:45 am

It has always been Merry X’mas and not happy X’mas.
One Sunday a week before X’Mas I took an 84 year old man and wheel chair bound lady to attend their Methodist service at the cinema auditorium. It was supposed to be a trial run for the coming X’Mas service. After all the hassle (the long walk, the lift and another long walk-nearly a 100m. I asked the pair when I went back to get them home ‘what time would like me to fetch you for X’Mas service?’I was not surprised when both of them reply ‘We’ll try to look for a church with easy access.’ In fact when I faced the many difficulties when trying to get the less mobile people I got very annoyed. It seems this world is made only for the young and fast but not the old and slow (I am a 71 year man-not fast but mobile)

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Gary Mac

posted December 26, 2010 at 1:10 pm

My Mom died 2 years ago and we spent our last Christmas with her Christmas 08. Christmas was always the highlight of her year because all her kids would be in one with her. She knew it would be her last with all our family. When I read about the best Ornament in your post it brought a tear to my eye.
My sis gave myself and all my brothers and sisters a note with a tiny package that read. The last Christmas that Mom was alive she special made some tree ornaments but they were forgotten to be handed out at the Christmas celebration. After the celebration was over and everyone had left she had discovered she forgot to give all their giftd and told my sister to give them to each next year because she knew she wouldn’t be there. Two years later and at opening the tiny present I couldn’t help but cry. Inside the package were tiny tree ornaments a Christmas wreath and a tiny stocking she had crocheted herself to remind us all how what a special time it always was. My sister said she couldn’t give them out last Christmas because it was just emotional for her. But at opening I melted into a heap of love that only my Mom can give … The best gift ever.

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posted December 26, 2010 at 2:01 pm

Best way to address the Holiday season: “Merry Christmas”
Worst way to address the holiday season: “Merry X-mas”
Christ deserves to be named not X…just sayin.

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posted December 26, 2010 at 6:26 pm

I would like to add a comment about “Xmas.” It is not a Madison Avenue creation, or worse, a text message symbol. It is my understanding that our letter “X” resembles an ancient Greek letter resembling an italicized “X” It is the first letter of the ancient Greek word for “Christ.” An ancient Greek symbol for “Christ” was this “X” superimposed over the ancient Greek letter resembling the modern “P” with a long tail, and would look like an “X” with a “P” sticking out of the top. When paper was scarce and space was at a premium, ancient English writers would borrow from the Greek and write “Xmas” instead of spelling it out. “Xmas” is correctly pronounced “Christmas,” not “X”mas.

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David Bridges

posted December 27, 2010 at 12:36 am

The best “scrooge” movie is with Alistar Sim,the worst “scooge” is with Bill Murray.

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posted December 27, 2010 at 9:13 am

Sorry…I have to disagree with your thoughts about stores that refuse to say “Merry CHRISTmas”. Here in Texas we have CHRISTMAS…not a “Happy Holiday” or “Seasons Greetings”….well, unless the “season” is football season!

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Eileen Kilbane

posted December 27, 2010 at 10:37 am

I disagree with you on calling “Christmas” a holiday. Christ is
the only reason for the season. The stores want to make money
off the christens for “Christmas” but want to call it a holiday.
What holiday are they talking about? If saying “Merry Christmas”
offends anyone, it is just to bad. My favor movie is the old
versions of the “Christmas Carol”. The worst movie was “Scrooged”
with Bill Murray. I hope you had a most “Blessed Christmas” and
will have a great “New Year” or should I say Happy 2011? I
certainly don’t want to offend anyone.
Yours truly,
Eileen Kilbane

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Mike R

posted December 28, 2010 at 4:34 am

The worst: The blow up balloon outdoor manger scene featuring cartoon like depiction of the baby Jesus, Mary Joseph and animals.
Putting the Christ back into Christmas went over the edge with with this one.

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Mike R

posted December 28, 2010 at 4:37 am

The worst about Christmas: Christians who feel threatened when hearing “Happy Holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas”
Signs of deep insecurity?

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Christe Ellison

posted December 28, 2010 at 10:12 am

“Concern” over whether people say Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays? How about hysteria? I never saw so much outrage as when Wal-Mart started saying “Happy Holidays.”
I don’t care which one you say to me. Both messages carry good wishes, and I accept it in the spirit intended. If you celebrate Christmas, fine; if you don’t, fine. It’s a free country.
A trend I would like to see, “Peace on earth, goodwill to all.” And if someone says “Happy Holidays,” just give them the benefit of the doubt that it’s easier to say that than “Merry Christmas/Happy Hanukkah/Happy Kwanzaa/Happy New Year/Happy Dewali, whichever you celebrate in your tradition.”
Oops, I forgot Happy Festivus.

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posted December 29, 2010 at 11:53 am

Since I do not participate in the activities associated with this time of year, most of your worst/best items are alien to me. One set did really strike me, though:
Best Christmas Cultural Trend: Concern for the poor.
Worst Christmas Cultural Trend: Concern for whether or not a retail establishment says “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Holidays.”
I notice some of this argument carried over into this post even though it was not the subject. Please indulge me if I put in a plug for another Beliefnet blog. Those who are concerned about what should/should not be said during this period of the year might want to check out “War on Christmas Time, Part II” at Especially look for the post by “g” of December 24, 2010 12:18 PM.
Another good article on Beliefnet is “What’s In A Name?” That gives a little more information regarding an earlier concept of “Christmas.”
What most people associate with “Christmas” was unknown about 300 years ago. So, why all the arguing about maintaining these new traditions?
Considering the plight of the poor is always a good trend – regardless of the time of year. I’ll take a quote from Jesus (out of context): “The poor you have with you always.” It’s not just on the 3rd Thursday of November or the 25th of December; it’s “always.” Also, our concern should not be limited to money. Look in the closet – are there clothes there that are still in good condition, but you don’t (or can’t) wear them? Are there sales in the local grocery stores where you can get 2 for the price of 1, but you don’t need 2? Are you a member of a warehouse club where you can buy bulk for just a little more than smaller quantities in the local grocery store, but don’t really use that much of the item(s)? Remember the poor.
The best/worst I’vd witnessed this year are:
Best – people wishing peace and happiness to each other regardless of their backgrounds.
Worst – people losing focus of what is really important as taught by most religions in the world.

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