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Posted at 9:00 AM ET, 12/23/2010

Festivus 2010 for the rest of us: Aggregating your grievances; admiring your feats of strength

By Katie Rogers
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In D.C., a group of people stop to read the messages at the Festivus kiosk on the corner of Columbia Rd. and Adams Mill Rd. (Staff photo)

Festivus is upon us. Break out the aluminum pole and prepare for your feat of strength.

The Dec. 23 celebration has become a part of our cultural zeitgeist since the holiday was introduced to the world in a 1997 "Seinfeld" episode by the character Frank Costanza as a protest to Christmas.

Here in D.C, a bulletin board to air grievances is set atop the hill in Adams Morgan; in Wisconsin a metal company has made a small holiday side business by selling Festivus poles; and out in California, an inmate recently used the holiday as an excuse to receive kosher meals for two months before a judge dismissed his attempts to use "devotion to Festivus" as an excuse to escape salami dinners.

It is "a celebration enjoyed by literally dozens of stoned college students and federal prisoners around the country, and based on my peculiar cultlike upbringing," Seinfeld' writer and Festivus founder Dan O'Keefe said in a discussion with our readers last year. He explained the origin of the holiday in his family -- his father created it and celebrated it whenever he felt like it -- but noted that the celebration has taken on a different meaning after being adopted by a larger community.

The two main events of the day revolve around airing your grievances and feats of strength. In the first, people declare what they are unhappy about, particularly the people around them. In the second, Costanza's feat of strength was to wrestle his guests, refusing to end the holiday until someone pinned him.

Your Take: To help spread the miracle of Festivus, tell us what #featsofstrength you plan to endure or what #airingofgrievances you plan to unleash.

By Katie Rogers  | December 23, 2010; 9:00 AM ET
Categories:  Holiday  
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Comments

I go beyond the mundane airing of grievances by distributing a previous untried recipe for Festivus salami. The recipe is in Sauveur magazine (can find online) and I have replaced orange liqueur with rum. Orane liquer is too ritzy for the rest of us.

Posted by: pamrider | December 23, 2010 10:18 AM | Report abuse

I go beyond the mundane airing of grievances by distributing a previous untried recipe for Festivus salami. The recipe is in Sauveur magazine (can find online) and I have replaced orange liqueur with rum. Orane liquer is too ritzy for the rest of us.

Posted by: pamrider | December 23, 2010 10:19 AM | Report abuse

The double posting and the previous untried recipe create the opportunity for grievances against me.

Posted by: pamrider | December 23, 2010 10:21 AM | Report abuse

I have a grievance against Daniel Snyder. We have had 7 coaches and 12 non-injury related starting QBs during his 11 year tenure and 3 post-season appearances for the trouble.

NY has had 2 coaches and 3 QBs (Manning, Warner, Collins) go to along with 2 superbowl appearances (1 victory)

Philly has had 1 coach and 3 (McNabb, Vick, Kolb) QBs to go along with 4 nfc championship games, and 1 superbowl appearance.

Dallas has had 5 coaches and 7 QBs and are not the example he should be following (other than monetarily).

How about you stick with a coach for the full 5 years of his contract and don't tell him who he can or can't have as his O-coord, D-coord, QB, or DT.

Posted by: ProfessorWrightBSU | December 23, 2010 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Grievance: Marylanders who think the left lane is the slow lane.

Feat of Strength: I refuse to each a Christmas cookie!

Posted by: trambusto | December 23, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Grievance: Marylanders who think the left lane is the slow lane.

Feat of Strength: I refuse to eat a Christmas cookie!

Posted by: trambusto | December 23, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Grievance(s): Congress, bad behavior, Christmas creep & its commercialization - my suggestion rename it "global gift giving day"
Feat(s) of Strength: I shall do my scheduled weight training in under 30 minutes & go for a run.

Posted by: notamullethead | December 23, 2010 2:37 PM | Report abuse

To all of those on Metro/bus/rail and in any other closed public space. I do not want to hear your cell phone conversations, I don't care what he/she said or what your boss is going to do! shut the H ell up and wait until you get home to blab out loud like and obnoxious 2 year old. Merry Christmas!!!!

Posted by: kendra2 | December 23, 2010 3:12 PM | Report abuse

I would celebrate Festivus if it were more pro-Kramer than anti-Christmas.

Posted by: blasmaic | December 23, 2010 5:57 PM | Report abuse

Grievance: Jim Moran

Posted by: gilbertbp | December 23, 2010 6:03 PM | Report abuse

Grievance: "Happy Holidays." You mean Hanukkah, which ended two weeks ago? Eid al-Adha, which ended five weeks ago? The winter solstice, which was two days ago plus it isn't a holiday?

Merry, Christmas, dammit. And I'm an atheist.

Posted by: gilbertbp | December 23, 2010 6:09 PM | Report abuse

I told you not to get me started...

Grievance: People who get me started.

Posted by: gilbertbp | December 23, 2010 6:10 PM | Report abuse

Grievance: Politicians who talk about "investing." When I hear that I'm investing in something, I want to know what my ROI (return on investment - look it up) is, and if the answer doesn't include numbers, I know I'm being lied to, which is another grievance.

Posted by: gilbertbp | December 23, 2010 6:13 PM | Report abuse

Grievance: Cold weather when I'm not skiing.

Posted by: gilbertbp | December 23, 2010 6:21 PM | Report abuse

My grievances: Rude Metro employees and the whole dysfunctional system.

Posted by: Pennie147 | December 24, 2010 3:28 AM | Report abuse

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