SELLING CONDOMS

Nothing much describes the state of the human race more than the stuff that gets advertised on TV. Go back 50 years and you would be implored to buy clothing, furniture, automobiles, soap, appliances. Never would you be invited to buy condoms, sex toys and lubricants, and drugs to increase your sexual performance. Neither would you ever see ads for hemorrhoid creams, breast implants and penis enlargement.

Now you do. Lots of them. Things have become so much more open and permissive now. When The Pill came on the market and women could have sex without getting pregnant, marriage became less important. When our population exploded, privacy became less important. Now anyone can go online and see all the naked bodies of both sexes they want, engaged in every imaginable sex act.

I do have a problem with all this, because love, which has always been in short supply anyway, is now considered to be part of sex. Love really has nothing to do with sex, but the TV ads say otherwise. According to them, a couple only expresses love for each other when they’re having sex or when he’s buying her diamonds, and the real, honest values of loyalty and caring are only on documentaries.

The reason Christmas has always been special to me is that at least on Christmas I got to experience, even if only in my imagination, a sense that I was loved by my family. I wasn’t, really, I was tolerated because it was too late, I’d already been born and there I was. But in the end, I’ve triumphed, sort of, because everyone older than me, all those who just tolerated me, are dead now. It’s too bad that none of them were capable of love, they never knew the richness of life they missed out on that they could have had. I’m the lucky one.

Christmas has been commercialized for centuries, shopkeepers have always capitalized on the season of giving. But the real reason for the day carries on, and it’s not to celebrate the birth of a Jew who was actually born in late Spring, or to wallow in religiosity. Christmas is the one day of the year we’ve set aside for telling those we care about, that we do care. One day out of 365 isn’t much, especially when you consider all the days on which we celebrate the beginnings and ends of wars and the various days of remembrance for dead soldiers, but it beats hell out of none.

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