Don’t tell Santa about these Christmas cards

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"Horror of the Holidays" anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston.

Card by Lady Pilot Letterpress

"Horror of the Holidays" anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston.

(RNS) It’s mid-December and that means we’re halfway to the finish line on what can be either the happiest or the hardest time of the year, depending on your feelings about the holidays. Card companies large and small are increasingly recognizing the conflicting emotions Christmas, Hanukkah and even Kwanzaa can inspire and are crafting cards accordingly.

Last year, Religion News Service did a roundup of “anti-holiday” cards and turned up a crop of mostly lighthearted, sardonic entries.

This year feels a bit darker. Our hunt for the best anti-holiday cards turned up far more grim candidates featuring depression, greed, isolation and even attacks by wild beasts. So why does this year’s batch seem so Ho-Ho-Hopeless? Is it the negative election rhetoric, the depressing news headlines, the birth of yet another Kardashian?

S. Brent Plate, no stranger to the mix of religion and popular culture, tells us to put things in perspective. The overall message of these cards is: Lighten up!

“I think with all the pseudo-gravitas about red Starbucks cups, the Fox News-fabricated ‘war on Christmas,’ mixed with an all-too-somber ‘silent night/holy night’ that’s been fused with Christmas, people are ready to make the holidays fun again,” he said. “There is this puritanical strain in U.S. culture that turns holidays into straight-laced affairs, but religious feasts and festivals have always had revelry and diversion at their heart.”

So here is this year’s crop of anti-holiday cards. Happy Whatever. Or not. You decide — because there’s a card for that.

"Wolves" anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston.

Card by Zeichen Press

“Wolves” anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston

Party up, and don’t worry about all those holiday bills. You’ll be dead by then. Card by Zeichen Press.

"Close Knit Family" anti-Christmas card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston

Card by Shannon Martin/GIRL DESIGNER

“Close Knit Family” anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston

Just another thing to worry about at the holidays — that someday your embarrassing family photos will be on someone else’s “funny” Christmas card. Card by Shannon Martin/Girl Designer.

"Greed" anti-Christmas card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston

http://www.zeichenpress.com

“Greed” anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston

Even children get into the anti-holiday spirit. Card by Zeichen Press.

"It's a Girl" anti-Christmas card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston.

Card by Noble Works

“It’s a Girl” anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston

“It’s a girl,” declare the occupants of this cartoon manger, raising everyone’s eyebrows but Mary’s. She alone looks contentedly down at the baby — Jesusina? Emmanuelle? — in the crib. Card by Noble Works.

"Happy Whatever" card made by Normal Human, based in Kansas City, Mo. Religion News Service photo by Sally Morrow

Card by Normal Human

“Happy Whatever” anti-holiday card made by Normal Human, based in Kansas City, Mo. Religion News Service photo by Sally Morrow

This card, by Normal Human, just about sums it up. Happy WHATEVER.

"Guilt" anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston.

Card by Lady Pilot Letterpress

“Guilt” anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston

Who says Jews have cornered the market on guilt? Sit! Eat! Enjoy! Card by Lady Pilot Letterpress.

"Horror of the Holidays" anti-Christmas card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston

Card by Lady Pilot Letterpress

“Horror of the Holidays” anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston

“Oh! The horror!” Card by Lady Pilot Letterpress.

"Depression" anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston.

Card by Lady Pilot Letterpress

“Depression” anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston

A season that seems to start with Halloween and end with Valentine’s Day. Card by Lady Pilot Letterpress.

"Latkes" anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston.

Card by Paper Epiphanies

“Latkes” anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston

This card is talking about YOU. Happy Hanukkah! Card by Paper Epiphanies.

"Dear Timmy" anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston.

Card by Lady Pilot Letterpress

“Dear Timmy” anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston

And don’t even think about asking for an iPad, Timmy! Card by Lady Pilot Letterpress.

"Office" anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston.

Card by Mina Lee Studio

“Office” anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston

Stupid fat guy! Card by Mina Lee Studio.

"Snowflake" anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston.

Card by Zeichen Press

“Snowflake” anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston

You’ve been warned, Minnesota! Card by Zeichen Press.

"Drinking Santa" anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston.

Card by Edition Inkognito

“Drinking Santa” anti-holiday card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston

Belly up to the bar, Santa. Card by Edition Inkognito.

"Revenge" anti-Christmas card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston.

Card by Zeichen Press,

“Revenge” anti-Christmas card. Religion News Service photo by Kimberly Winston

Just you wait ’til next year, when there will be even more angry holiday cards! Card by Zeichen Press.

(Kimberly Winston is a national correspondent for Religion News Service)

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  • Debbo

    Hahahahahahahaha!

  • George Nixon Shuler

    And who can forget W.B. Yeats’ “The Second Coming”?

    THE SECOND COMING

    Turning and turning in the widening gyre
    The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
    Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
    Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
    The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
    The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
    The best lack all conviction, while the worst
    Are full of passionate intensity.

    Surely some revelation is at hand;
    Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
    The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
    When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
    Troubles my sight: a waste of desert sand;
    A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
    A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
    Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
    Wind shadows of the indignant desert birds.

    The darkness drops again but now I know
    That twenty centuries of stony sleep
    Were vexed to…

  • George Nixon Shuler

    Oops cut off the last verse there:

    The darkness drops again but now I know
    That twenty centuries of stony sleep
    Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
    And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
    Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

  • Fran

    Are we there yet? December 26, when it’s all over!!!! ❤️?☝