Odd Thoughts: Feast upon holiday traditions

Less than a weekend away from Christmas, it’s the festive time – or quite literally, the time for feasting.

It is entirely unlikely, of course, that the true reason for Christmas – the birth of the Christ child – occurred on Dec. 25. More likely, the scholars who study such things maintain, the putative son of God made his appearance in the manger of our lowly earthly plain some time in mid to late September, or perhaps as late as October.

It was opportune, however, to usurp the pagan Midwinter celebration, and keep newly minted Christians interested with their traditional feasting, rather than chance them slipping into their old ways of feasting for less approved hopefulness in the dreariest and seemingly most hopeless time of the year.

The Druids and other pagan priests and priestesses had figured, long before the Christians came along, that an annual time of feasting in celebration of the shortest days of the year gave recognition that days were about to get longer and thus time for spring planting and replenishment of precarious food stores would soon be at hand.

And so it is that, Christian or not, we drag our oldest cookbooks with our oldest, most traditional family recipes off dusty shelves or out of seldom opened drawers.

This is the one time of year when the old books reign supreme over the Internet, despite its unlimited offerings of exciting culinary adventures. In the Christmas kitchen in many households, the fresh-faced upstart is asked to step aside and let tradition take the lead.

When you open your favourite cookbook – most often your oldest – it’s like visiting an old friend. And you quickly find yourself wondering why it’s taken a whole year to get back together again.

That favourite cookbook is easy to spot: it’s literally grimy with favouritism. No need for a “search function,” it automatically opens to your best recipe.

You don’t have to add cookbook recipes to your Favourites list, like you do with your browsers and computers. Simply as part of the act of culinary creation, your pages are marked effortlessly with a patina of old flour, grease spatters, and vanilla extract stains. The marks that give your books character would kill your ThinkPad or iPhone.

Most of all, those musty old books exude a comfortable Christmas feeling as no electronic devices could.

Merry Christmas!

And happy feasting!

 

 

Just Posted

Court tosses Port Moody’s ticket for anti-SOGI rally

A group founded by a Langley woman was fined for a rally in Port Moody in 2018.

VIDEO: Dragon’s Den star headlines Unapologetically Her show in Langley

TV celebrity, author, and renowned entrepreneur Arlene Dickinson speaks truths about powerful women.

Aldergrove Kodiaks drown Whalers 6-3

Aldergrove Junior hockey team secure in PJHL playoffs spot next month

Langley women’s group fundraises by celebrating life of Scottish poet

The Soroptimists of the Langleys are hosting a Robbie Burns Night as a fundraiser for local seniors.

LETTER: Langley/Surrey shortchanged on transit for Vancouver

Funding to get SkyTrain to Langley City could come from not undergrounding Vancouver’s extension.

VIDEO: Langley grocer serves up breakfast to neighbouring school

Willoughby Elementary students and their families could enjoy a free breakfast on Thursday morning.

Olympian snowboarder Max Parrot diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma

Each year in Canada, approximately 900 people are diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma

‘Prince of Pot’ Marc Emery accused of sexual assault, harassment

Emery denied the allegations, but a Toronto woman says she is not the only one speaking out

Vancouver Island photographer makes National Geographic’s 2018 elite

Rare double honour for Marston from the 36 best Your Shots out of nearly 19,000 photos

Ex-Liberal candidate in Burnaby, B.C., says volunteer wrote controversial post

Karen Wang dropped out following online post singling out NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh’s ethnicity

Asteroids are smacking Earth twice as often as before

The team counted 29 craters that were no older than 290 million years

Canada’s arrest of Huawei exec an act of ‘backstabbing,’ Chinese ambassador says

China has called Canada’s arrest of Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou ‘politically motivated’

Manure company causing ‘toxic’ stink at Abbotsford school seeks permit

Property across from King Traditional Elementary cannot operate manure facility without permit

Vancouver city council endorses free transit for youth

Mayor Kennedy Stewart will write a support letter to TransLink

Most Read