21 December 2003
In Britain, we have Boxing Day straight after Christmas. Why?Meg says:
Boxing day is traditionally a day for doing not very much of anything. TYhe main reason for this is that there simply isn't very much to do, it being a sort of anti-climax after the fesitivities of the day before.
In many ways, the day itself is a lot like Christmas day: it's a bank holiday; there's some terrible dross on telly; there are mountains of food around.
Only it's all slightly tainted in some way. The TV networks have programmed the second-best stuff for Boxing Day - Field of Dreams rather than, say, Spiderman, and so consequently the schedule feels somewhat like it's been made up of stuff that there wasn't really room for on Christmas Day itself.
When the network execs sat around a big table in June, deciding what to show over the Holidays, I imagine them with lots of cut out blocks representing programmes fitting into a wooden frame, representing the day itself. When they jiggled the schedule, what wouldn't fit in to the frame was put on the floor. The pile on the floor is Boxing Day. Second best. Not quite good enough.
Boxing Day is like the album released by the Popstars rejects. However good it is, you're always slightly aware that the contributors didn't actually win.
Likewise, Boxing Day food is made up of leftovers, and even the chocolate assortment boxes have already been opened and picked through. What remains is the second choice, the confectionary no-one wanted on the first round.
And that's Boxing Day in a nutshell. A bank holiday, but one which no-one really knows what to do with.
Historical note: Boxing day was invented by the World Boxing Association in 1802 in an effort to get people to work off the flab accumulated the day before. No, really.« 20 | Main | 22 »