Whenever I say “Merry Christmas” to one of my female co-workers, she replies, “And a Happy Solstice to you.” I’ve asked her not to say this because I think she is mocking my religion, but she keeps saying it. Is this something I should report to management? How can I get her to stop telling me to have a happy pagan ritual?
— Holiday Spirited
She is probably a witch, so the only way to stop the problem will be to burn her at the stake or use pentagrams or something. To be on the safe side, tie garlic around your neck. As tight as possible.
— Evil Skippy
Stop wishing her a Merry Christmas if you hate her response. If you are feeling adventurous, wish her a Happy Solstice and see if you get a Merry Christmas in reply. You could even go for broke and wish her a Happy Kwanzaa.
The thing to remember at this time of year is that when you are at work, you are not at home or church. Some people will share your religious (or non-religious) views; some people won’t. (Also, keep in mind that someone can celebrate both the solstice and Christmas — they are not mutually exclusive. Rather than mocking your beliefs, your co-worker may be simply expressing cheer about the entire holiday season.)
We all have different priorities, traditions and hot buttons. Be respectful and understanding toward other people and you will usually be treated with respect in return. That’s the true holiday spirit in my humble and/or evil opinion.
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