Tuesday, December 27, 2005

A Little Late But Nevertheless From EB...

E.B. White's Christmas Greeting -- 1952

From this high midtown hall, undecked with boughs, unfortified with
mistletoe, we send forth our tinselled greetings as of old, to friends,
to readers, to strangers of many conditions in many places.

Merry Christmas to uncertified accountants, to tellers who have made a
mistake in addition, to girls who have made a mistake in judgment, to
grounded airline passengers, and to all those who can't eat clams! We
greet with particular warmth people who wake and smell smoke. To
captains of river boats on snowy mornings we send an answering toot at
this holiday time.

Merry Christmas to intellectuals and other despised minorities!

Merry Christmas to the musicians of Muzak and men whose shoes don't fit!
Greetings of the season to unemployed actors and the blacklisted
everywhere who suffer for sins uncommitted; a holly thorn in the thumb
of compilers of lists!

Greetings to wives who can't find their glasses and to poets who can't
find their rhymes!

Merry Christmas to the unloved, the misunderstood, the overweight. Joy
to the authors of books whose titles begin with the word "How" (as
though they knew!). Greetings to people with a ringing in their ears;
greetings to growers of gourds, to shearers of sheep, and to makers of
change in the lonely underground booths!

Merry Christmas to old men asleep in libraries! Merry Christmas to
people who can't stay in the same room with a cat! We greet, too, the
boarders in boarding houses on 25 December, the duennas in Central Park
in fair weather and foul, and young lovers who got nothing in the mail.

Merry Christmas to people who plant trees in city streets; Merry
Christmas to people who save prairie chickens from extinction!
Greetings of a purely mechanical sort to machines that think-- plus a
sprig of artificial holly. Joyous Yule to Cadillac owners whose conduct
is unworthy of their car!

Merry Christmas to the defeated, the forgotten, the inept; Joy to all
dandiprats and bunglers! We send, most particularly and most hopefully,
our greetings and our prayers to soldiers and guardsmen on land and sea
and in the air-- the young men doing the hardest things at the hardest
time of life. To all such, Merry Christmas, blessings, and good luck!
We greet the Secretaries-designate, the President-elect; Merry Christmas
to our new leaders, peace on earth, good will, and good management!

Merry Christmas to couples unhappy in doorways! Merry Christmas to all
who think they are in love but aren't sure!

Greetings to people waiting for trains that will take them in the wrong
direction, to people doing up a bundle and the string is too short, to
children with sleds and no snow! We greet ministers who can't think of
a moral, gagmen who can't think of a joke.

Greetings, too, to the inhabitants of other planets; see you soon!

And last, we greet all skaters on small natural ponds at the edge of
woods toward the end of afternoon. Merry Christmas, skaters! Ring,
steel! Grow red, sky! Die down, wind!

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good morrow!

-E.B. White-


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