It was the beginning of December. The trip had gone reasonably well, and
he was ready to go back. The airport on the other hand had turned a tacky
red and green with loudspeakers blared annoying elevator renditions of
cherished Christmas carols.
Being someone who took Christmas very seriously, and being slightly tired,
he was not in a particularly good mood.
Going to check in his luggage, he saw hanging mistletoe. Not real
mistletoe, but very cheap plastic with red paint on some of the rounder
parts and green paint on some of the flatter and "pointier" parts, that
could be taken for mistletoe only in a very Picasso sort of way.
With a considerable degree of irritation and nowhere else to vent it, he
said to the lady attendant, "Even if I were not married, I would not want
to kiss you under such a ghastly mockery of mistletoe."
"Sir, look more closely at where the mistletoe is."
"Ok, I see that it's above the luggage scale, which is the place you'd have
to step forward for a kiss."
"That's not why it's there."
"Ok, I give up. Why is it there?"
"It's there so you can kiss your luggage goodbye."
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
For the curious who might not know of the "tradition" of kissing under the
mistletoe, let me provide a tiny bit of history.
The history of kissing under the mistletoe means going back to ancient
Scandinavia -- to custom and the Norse myths: "It was also the plant of
peace in Scandinavian antiquity. If enemies met by chance beneath it in a
forest, they laid down their arms and maintained a truce until the next
day." This ancient Scandinavian custom led to mistletoe being a symbol of
love, peace and goodwill. It may be that this embrace of goodwill among
enemies eventually led to the traditional kiss under the mistletoe. Some
cultures say that if a man kisses a woman while she is standing under
mistletoe, it is a proposal of marriage! Most cultures around the world
however, now just view a person standing under mistletoe as being available
for a kiss!
[ Author Unknown -- Thomas S. Ellsworth (email@example.com) ]
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