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On this special holiday, which means many different things to different people, we offer an easy-to-digest sampling of thoughts and opinions to ponder. The first and the last are traditional in this spot on this day. The others come from a variety of Internet sources —,,,,,

Enjoy! And happy holidays from The Tribune Editorial Board.

And the angel said unto them, "Fear not! For, behold, I bring you tidings of great joy. Which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day, in the city of David, A Saviour, Which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you: Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes. Lying in a manger."

— St. Luke II: 10-12

Christmas is a time when kids tell Santa what they want and adults pay for it. Deficits are when adults tell the government what they want and their kids pay for it.

— Richard Lamm

In the old days, it was not called the Holiday Season; the Christians called it 'Christmas' and went to church; the Jews called it 'Hanukkah' and went to synagogue; the atheists went to parties and drank. People passing each other on the street would say 'Merry Christmas!' or 'Happy Hanukkah!' or (to the atheists) 'Look out for the wall!'

— Dave Barry, "Christmas Shopping: A Survivor's Guide"

People can't concentrate properly on blowing other people to pieces if their minds are poisoned by thoughts suitable to the twenty-fifth of December.

— Ogden Nash

At Christmas play and make good cheer

For Christmas comes but once a year.

— Thomas Tusser

Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful.

— Norman Vincent Peale

I can understand people simply fleeing the mountainous effort Christmas has become ... but there are always a few saving graces and finally they make up for all the bother and distress.

— May Sarton

Aren't we forgetting the true meaning of Christmas? You know, the birth of Santa.

— Matt Groening, "The Simpsons" cartoonist

Dear Lord, I've been asked, nay commanded, to thank Thee for the Christmas turkey before us . . . a turkey which was no doubt a lively, intelligent bird . . . a social being . . . capable of actual affection . . . nuzzling its young with almost human-like compassion. Anyway, it's dead and we're gonna eat it. Please give our respects to its family . . .

— Berke Breathed

"How could it be so?

It came without ribbons! Boxes or bags!"

And he puzzled three hours 'til his puzzler was sore.

Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn't before.

"Maybe Christmas," he thought, "doesn't come from a store.

Maybe Christmas," he thought, "means a little bit more."

— Dr. Seuss

The perfect Christmas gift for a sportscaster, as all fans of sports clichés know, is a scoreless tie.

— William Safire

A barn shall harbour heaven,

A stall become a shrine.

— Richard Wilbur

The Christmas season has come to mean the period when the public plays Santa Claus to the merchants.

— John Andrew Holmes

There has been only one Christmas — the rest are anniversaries.

— W.J. Cameron

The peace and joy of the Christmas season was marred by a proclamation of a general strike of all the military forces of the world. Panic reigns in the hearts of all the patriots of every persuasion. Meanwhile, fears of universal disaster sank to an all-time low over the world.

— Isaac Asimov

Next to a circus there ain't nothing that packs up and tears out faster than the Christmas spirit.

— Kin Hubbard

Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night.

— Clement Clark Moore, "A Visit From St. Nicholas"

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