Ah, the joys of working a holiday themed event during an actual holiday for you, but that will be assumed to be a completely different holiday-related event for the patrons of your workplace and so you get to straddle the line of visibly honoring your beliefs and practices without directly countering the seasonal cheer of the hegemonic privileged classes in their festive garb.
At least not sartorially.
I was, for likely the first time in my life, quick and unflinching with meeting every “Merry Christmas” spoken my direction with a bright and joyous “Happy Hanukkah!” (as it was the fifth night when I wore this) and only got minor glee out of watching the startles and the double takes and the registering of my necklace.
As a sociologist, there is nothing I enjoy more than disrupting the bubble of the status quo. Imagine, there are other holidays in December than the overly anglicized, whitewashed, and commercialized birth of a Middle Eastern Jewish refugee child in foreign lands!
Before you go calling me the Grinch — know my household celebrates no fewer than three winter holidays, Christmas included, though mostly because it is the secular default and because of the deeply puritanical roots of the American work ethic, we all get the day off anyway regardless of religious affiliation (or lack thereof).
And as counterintuitive as it may seem, in times like these where antisemitism has taken up a far more prominent social stance than it ever should have been allowed to regain in human history, it is paramount that the general public be reminded of exactly how non-hegemonic their worlds truly are. Society has forgotten how to embrace that which makes us different from one another is what makes us so vibrant as a culture, and I, for one, will no longer be homogenized into the Eurocentric Westernized background of a perception of America that frankly doesn’t exist.
My representation matters. My voice matters. My difference, matters.
And I refuse to hide it any longer under the pretentious illusion of safety.
Spoiler alert: there’s no such thing as safety unless you’re a rich straight white man in this world. So the rest of us might as well go down fighting with hopes of paving the way for a more tolerant and equitable future.
Happy holidays, indeed.
Oh and PS my hair is all black/brown now again — mostly because of my personal desire to hit peak Snow White vibes for some impending photo shoots, but also because it didn’t feel right anymore, again. So yeah. Tada.
Black stretch mock neck bodysuit: ASOS
Warm silver metallic pleated midi skirt & silver pavé Star of David necklace : TJ Maxx
Iridescent drop gem earrings: Kate Spade
O-ring belt: Nine West
Patterned tights: Spanx
Heeled leather platform booties: Jessica Simpson
Lipstick: KVD Everlasting Love Liquid in Exorcism