Friday, January 3, 2014

The Panda Bear on Winter Blues, Holidays, and Job Stress

The Panda Bear has been reading more and more in different articles that the number one source of stress for Americans is their jobs.   The workloads are heavy and the hours are long.    People feel that their employers don't treat them well and as human beings with feelings.   The Panda Bear can confirm these findings with her own experience in the work force even though she is a Panda Bear not a human being.

Every winter the Panda Bear gets blue.   The days are short and cold.   From Thanksgiving to New Years is the holiday period in the United States where family is emphasized.   The Panda Bear will feel blue because her family is very, very small and she lost Father Panda almost two years ago.

One of the sources of tension at work in the winter are the holidays at the office.   The Panda Bear feels in a perfect world there would be some very generic "Winter" holiday events.   The Panda Bear does not see any put down of Christmas in saying "Happy Holiday" instead of Christmas especially as the Panda Bear does not celebrate Christmas.  She wishes all the best and joy for Christmas for those who celebrate it.   However, the Panda Bear also believes it is holiday not everyone in the office celebrates and people should not be differentiated in the office by the holidays they do or do not celebrate.   

The Panda Bear is Jewish and was raised not to celebrate Christmas.  If it were up to the Panda Bear no one's religion would be discussed at work.    At one time, the Panda Bear would have said there was such a thing as a secular Christmas.   However, for the past twelve years the holidays at work(really Christmas) have had very overtly Christian(birth of the divine Jesus) tones to them.   In fact the first year, in her present job the Panda Bear's manager gave her a Christmas card that stressed the importance of going to Church.   The manager asked then asked the Panda Bear what she thought about the message.  The Panda Bear just said the message was very nice.   The Panda Bear has no idea if the manager knew that the Panda Bear was Jewish.    (The Panda Bear now for unrelated reasons has another manager).      This is but one of many incidents that the Panda Bear recently experienced where she has received cards explicitly stating that the Christmas holidays were Christian should be celebrated as such.

The Panda Bear heard on the radio that now most Americans think of Christmas as being a religious rather than then secular holiday and the Panda Bear sees this at work.   Many of the Christians where the Panda Bear work feel that they should be able be able to express their Christian religion at work.   These Christians constitute the work majority.

The institutions the Panda Bear works for are supposed to be nonsectarian and respecting of cultural diversity.   They are located in a major metropolitan area where there are many different religious and cultural groups.  

The Panda is looking forward to the days getting longer.


  1. Maybe you should wish these people Happy Hanukkah and see how they like it and stress the importance of celebrating the holiday with potato pancakes and lighting candles, and playing with the dreidel all that other good stuff!!!!!!

    1. In a perfect world I would say no religion comes into work though sometimes I do feel that Christmas-Hanukah is closer to Happy Holidays then just Christmas.