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    We Wish You A Merry Saturnalia

    | Cleveland, OH, USA | History, Holidays, Religion, Theme Of The Month

    (I worked in a local retail store while in high school and college. A week before Halloween, I notice a regular customer riding in one of our electric carts, staring at the Halloween costumes and props. She is there for some time. I decide to ask if she needs help.)

    Customer: “St. Michael the Archangel defend us in battle—”

    (As a Catholic, I recognize she is praying.)

    Me: “Ma’am, can I help you?”

    Customer: “Only if you can replace all this evil with Christmas stuff.”

    Me: “Thanksgiving and Christmas are just around the corner. One more week!”

    (The customer then goes into a rant about what Halloween means to Wiccans and pagans. Then she gives a thorough lesson in Tartarus and other mythologies. She invites me to help her host a Bible study for her good Christian neighbors, which is her alternative to dressing up and ‘worshipping demons.’ By this time, my manager thinks I’m just goofing around and is coming towards me to say something. The customer stands up, grabs my arm and raises it into the air while using her other arm to throw costumes, props, and wigs out into the aisle. My manager seems to understand what is happening. After getting her to stop protesting, he turns to me.)

    Manager: “Thank you for not telling her about the origins of gift giving on Christmas.”