Merry Christmas everybody.
And if that offends you, click off my column.
I'm not saying that you don't have a right to be offended. You do. And if you think a blessing of good tidings for one of the most celebrated holidays in the entire world is worth a Grrr!, then more power to you.
But you can't tell me you don't feel something this time of the year, every year.
No matter what one's religion, the Christmas spirit is strong enough to transcend secular belief; at home, at work, on television, the Internet, in newspapers and on radio.
There's Secret Santa at the office, where colleagues surprise one another with gifts. Mine gave me a Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Calendar — again, making it the third time for that gift at work. I'm not really sure what that means.
On television, ads are all aimed at buying gifts for loved ones, and I'm all for that, except I wish advertisers could come up with something other than music from "The Nutcracker" year in and year out. Don't they get paid a lot of money to come up with something different?
On CBS's "Sunday Morning," (search) host Charles Osgood sat at a piano and sang Christmas carols replacing "Christmas" with "Holidays," making a point of how absurd the movement is.
It was one of the best segments I've seen on the subject. And Osgood's a very good singer to boot (while I'm on the subject of CBS, Sunday was a banner day for the embattled news division. In addition to "Sunday Morning," Mike Wallace (search) showed why he's a living broadcasting legend with his no-nonsense interview with knucklehead former football player Ricky Williams (search) on "60 Minutes" later in the day — if you missed it, ask for a TiVo or Replay DVR for Christmas.)
My satellite TV receiver is locked on the "Sounds of the Season" channel this week. I can't get enough of Christmas music, even if Jon Bon Jovi's rendition of "Please Come Home for Christmas" comes on (see last column).
At the malls, at restaurants and around the neighborhoods, Christmas lights, Christmas trees, wreaths and garland spruce up the festivities and add to the Christmas cheer, and even Santa Claus parades around on volunteer fire trucks, with sirens and lights blazing away.
In Charles Dickens' classic "A Christmas Carol," old meanie Ebenezer Scrooge was taught the true meaning of Christmas, and at the end he let the spirit of the holiday take him over. I even bet that some of the loudest critics of "Christmas" — the ImporTants and Self-Righteons sooo offended by the term — will be exchanging presents under their Christmas trees come this Saturday.
And to them I say, Merry Christmas. Take that!
Oblivion of the Year ... Grrr!
Last week you voted for the year's biggest Oblivion, and movie-maker Michael Moore won hands down, with more than 70 percent of the vote (over 120,000 votes). Teresa Heinz Kerry received 15 percent, while Ashlee Simpson, John Ashcroft and Justin Timberlake/Janet Jackson all split the remaining 15 percent of votes.
On the winner, rumor has it Moore is pushing for The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to nominate "Fahrenheit 9/11" for best picture of the year, not best documentary. Before you Grrr!, that would be accurate — since most documentaries have some semblance of integrity, while movies — typically "best picture" fare — are mostly fiction. Good luck, Michael. By the way, how's that campaign to convince "every thinking American to stop watching FOX News Channel" coming along? (see his e-mail response to me last summer.)
Last I checked, FOX News Channel was still number one for cable news.
Stupid Lit'l Dreamer
This week's SLD mention goes to Maryville College's Kate Winstrom, who not only serves as the school's wrestling manager, she also works to raise money for the club team's trips, equipment and attire.
The Stupid Lit'l Dreamer is the person who works hard to make a difference — no matter how big, or how small — the task. Nice going, Kate.
Now for Your Grrrs ...
Commander J. Bender sends this Grrr! Rendition of "'Twas the Night Before Christmas":
'Twas the night before Christmas with Oblivions galore,
clogging the roads, and all of the stores.
Their shopping not done and doing their share,
of pushing and shoving everyone there.
Their children were wrestling in multiple aisles,
acting as Real-ities and morons a while.
'Cause Mamma with her carts, and Pa with a pine,
had just settled into a long checkout line.
Then out in the lobby there arose such a clatter,
as ImporTants annoyed us with consistent chatter.
The Self-Righteons grumbled, and left with a huff,
as Obliviots plundered and scoured for stuff.
The Polignorants were reading tabloids with glee,
then argued about the taxes on tea.
And what else could happen as this night wore on?
but the squealing of tires and blasting of horns.
A Left Lane Vigilante who wasn't so quick,
had just caused a pile-up that made us all sick.
Then thicker than locusts the WalMartians came,
all screaming and yelling and acting insane.
Come Straka, O'Reilly, now Asman and Malloy,
on Gibson, Cavuto, On Hume and McElroy!
Stupid Lit'l Dreamers we call you by name,
who keep us informed, and help keep us sane!
So in a time when truth must be told,
we turn to FOX News, the brave and the bold.
So we can exclaim as we drive out of sight,
Merry Christmas to all and to all a GRRRR Night!
— Bravo, Commander. Bravo!
Until next week ... Grrr!
Mike Straka is the director of operations and special projects for FOXNews.com, and contributes as a features reporter on FOX Magazine, and as a news cut-ins anchor on FOX News Channel. Read Mike's Bio.