Reader Bob Terry, a “Seinfeld” fan supreme, dropped by our newsroom last week to present me with my very own Festivus pole. It will not be re-gifted. The pole occupies a spot in my spillover cubicle of tchotchkes.
Festivus, a fictional holiday, was created in a 1997 episode of the series by curmudgeonly character Frank Costanza as a way to celebrate the Christmas season without all the pressure and commercialization.
Festivus decorations are a simple aluminum pole, no more. (“I find tinsel distracting,” Costanza said in the episode.) The Festivus celebration involves a dinner, the ritual Airing of Grievances against family members and a post-dinner wrestling bout with the head of the household, an activity dubbed Feats of Strength.
Bob couldn’t find aluminum for the homemade pole, but he improvised. What’s with the paper, clipped to the pole’s top? “That’s for you to list your grievances,” he told me.
Festivus, which has its own Wikipedia page, is celebrated on Dec. 23. Are you ready for Festivus? Thanks to Bob Terry, I am. Giddy-up.