“That’s the true spirit of Christmas; people being helped by people other than me.” Jerry Seinfeld
Like re-watching It’s a Wonderful Life and National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, the LOA! team makes it an annual holiday tradition to re-read Charles Dickens’ 1843 novella, A Christmas Carol. If reading isn’t your thing (let’s hope that not the case since Look Out Above! is currently available at special holiday pricing on Amazon), there are 135 film versions of the story – some much better than others!
Perhaps you recall the exchange when, after confronting Ebenezer Scrooge in his bedchambers, the Ghost of Marley observes: “No space of regret can make amends for one life’s opportunity misused!” To which Scrooge hesitantly replies . . . “But you were always a good man of business.” And then the words from Marley that slay all who thoughtfully consider them:
“Business! Mankind was my business. The common welfare was my business. Charity, mercy, forbearance, and benevolence, were, all, my business. The dealings of my trade were but a drop of water in the comprehensive ocean of my business.”
And so it is. Surely our most meaningful “business” is the difference we make in people’s lives. Especially since, as Marley adds, any “spirit working kindly in its little sphere, whatever it may be, will find its mortal life too short for its vast means of usefulness.” As we go about our work life through the season and new year ahead, let’s be mindful of our true business.
Happy holidays to all!
See also: The Onion has news on the latest scholarly research pertaining to the original draft of A Christmas Carol: https://www.theonion.com/literary-scholars-discover-first-draft-of-a-christmas-1845863062