Illustration: Andrew Mazariegos- Ovalle/The Olaf Messenger
Let’s be for real. Christmas is a better holiday than Thanksgiving in every regard. There’s really no argument to be made, but I’ll make it anyway.
First, the overall vibes of Christmas are simply superior to Thanksgiving. Christmastime in Minnesota means beautiful, fluffy snow covers everything as far as the eye can see. This inspires snowman-making with friends, sipping on hot chocolate, sledding, and walking around town to gaze at displays of Christmas lights. The coziness is unmatched, and all of these fun things make Christmas a happier holiday to experience. What kinds of activities do you participate in solely because it’s Thanksgiving, outside of eating dinner? Turkey hunting, maybe? Sounds gruesome.
Speaking of Thanksgiving dinner, you’ll get that same dinner on Christmas, but it’ll be better. Both holidays have the big family dinner where you all say — truthfully or not — how thankful you are to be together. They also both have the same specialty food items such as turkey, stuffing, green bean casserole, and pumpkin pie. Christmas, however, has the bonus of presents. If you like your family, this is great because you get to show your appreciation for them by giving gifts. If you dislike your family, you get a present to compensate for the torture you endured during dinner. It’s a win-win situation that Thanksgiving lacks.
Another thing that Thanksgiving lacks: a good color palette. What colors do you associate with Thanksgiving? Brown, maybe yellow or orange. Yawn. Christmas, on the other hand? Green, red, silver, and gold. Christmas colors are objectively better, especially when it comes to decorating. The colors inspire festivity, liven up any room, and are generally more fun to put up. It’s also an activity you can do with friends if you don’t want to go out in the cold.
Speaking of things that’ll keep you warm, Christmas has you covered because love is in the air! Christmas is the perfect time to go on cozy, cutesy dates with your partner. You could cuddle up in a local café, go ice skating together, or do some of the pastimes I listed earlier. You could even watch a corny Christmas rom-com together — there are plenty to choose from. Whatever you decide to do with your partner, it is almost always a successful date. And there’s a reason people don’t make rom-coms about Thanksgiving: it’s boring.
Finally, let’s address the elephant in the room: “Christmas is a Christian holiday.” Yes, this is technically true. I believe, however, that you can celebrate Christmas no matter your religious identity. If you aren’t Christian, Christmas doesn’t have to be about the birth of Jesus. Rather, it can be about “the season of giving” that this holiday encourages. Sure, Thanksgiving asks us to think about what we’re thankful for, but that’s still focused on ourselves. Christmas asks us to focus on others. A whole holiday centered on giving to others, to not being selfish, and to being a compassionate person. Isn’t that what we need right now, especially in our hyper-individualistic world? I think so.
Riley Peterson is from Minneapolis. Her majors are creative writing and environmental studies.