My mother had a friend who lived for a while with our landlady just after World War 2. Originally from Greece, Artemulah had lived in Europe and spoke a number of languages fluently. But English was a challenge for her. There are so many exception bs to the rules – and so many slang phrases. Mom would help her with her English and every once in a while she would shake her head and mutter “Crazy English…” when she chanced on one of these exceptions.

In the US we have more than just written language craziness. Some things I immediately think of

Our societal celebration of harvest called thanksgiving features food, family & football but other than oblique references to Pilgrims, very little in the way of gratitude.

Christmas (derived from Christ Mass) is more about Santa Claus, and presents than about the person for whom it is named.

Easter is now about bunnies and candy and clothes – even as fewer and fewer people wear their newly purchased wardrobe to church where the Easter celebration began and is centered in terms of meaning.

And we celebrate this holiday called Labor Day by giving everyone a day off…


About don

The Rev Don Hill is an Episcopal priest, rail fan and writer. He and his wife the Rev. Dr. Nancy Woodworth-Hill are currently Co-Pastors of St Paul's Episcopal Church, Jeffersonville IN, in the Diocese of Indianapolis. They also work as parish consultants in Appreciative Inquiry, strategic planning and spirituality development for parishes and vestries.
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