Danny DeVito drunk and unruly in public? I think I know why.
I have to confess, I'm not a big fan of Christmas. No, let me be more frank: I loathe Christmas. Absolutely hate it. The pressure to haunt department stores and shove fellow shoppers aside for expensive gifts, heavily discounted; the horrendous traffic, made far worse by endless Midnight Madness sales; the parties where you overeat and drink and go ho-ho-ho when all you want to do is go home and pull the sheets over your head till it's all over; the obligation to stre-e-e-etch your cheeks upwards in a death rictus and force a "Merry Christmas!" from between gritted teeth (greet me and I'm likely to snarl). Given the choice between an extended Christmas season (nowadays pushed as far backwards as what we Filipinos like to call the first of the "ber" months, meaning September) and a long and slow root canal done without the benefit of anesthesia, I'd choose--no, I'd insist--on the root canal. Christmas, the way it's celebrated in America and the way it's being aped more and more in Manila, is just not my style.
Maybe one of the worst manifestations of this wretched season would be the Christmas movie, that annual Hollywood display of forced Yuletide cheer (when Filipino films try it, the results can be even worse). In the old days it would be a fairly tasteful display of pious sentiment like the 1947 "Miracle at 34th Street" (the '94 version wasn't too bad, either); nowadays it's something farcical and chock full of CGI effects like Tim Allen's endless "Santa Clause" movies (the latest featuring a face-off between Santa and Jack Frost). A more recent trend is farce without the CGI, driven by cute "concepts" like a self-centered celebrity adopting a family for the holidays (the gruesome 2004 movie "Surviving Christmas," starring a perfectly typecast Ben Affleck as the aforementioned self-centered celebrity).