Christmas

Courtesy of George Dolgikh from Pexels

There is a piece of modern music by Charles Ives called “The Unanswered Question.” That’s an intriguing title because we all have a whole lot of unanswered questions. Unfortunately the music only asks the question, with its strange dissonances and unsteady rhythms, without offering even the hint of an answer.

Image by Prawny from Pixabay

At this time of year, whether you celebrate Christmas or not it’s hard to escape the legacy of Charles Dickens who more or less invented the modern Holiday, with all its charms and excesses. When the Puritans were in power, back in the 1600s, Christmas festivities were banned, along with plum puddings, as being sinfully indulgent. Even up to the 1840s, Christmas was not much more than a date on the church calendar. Then along came Dickens and his book A Christmas Carol and December was never the same again. He published the book in 1844 in an urgent attempt to make some money. As everyone knows, A Christmas Carol was a mega best seller. Dickens even made an American tour, reading his sentimental story to rapt audiences. There were stage versions of the story, and later movies, musicals, television specials and no doubt there is a videogame too.

The Year Isn't Over Until The Christmas Bird Count Is In

Dec 28, 2017
Toby Talbot / AP

The National Audubon Society’s annual Christmas Bird Count is underway, drawing tens of thousands of volunteers across the U.S., Canada, the Caribbean, Latin America, and Pacific Islands.

Support PDX / Flickr

While most parents are careful in giving toddlers age appropriate toys for the holidays, accidents can still happen. And it’s often the little things that can cause the biggest problems.

Cassandra Basler / WSHU

On Monday night more than two dozen New Haven residents gathered at First and Summerfield United Methodist Church to light a so-called Sanctuary Tree – a Christmas tree honoring Connecticut residents facing deportation.