Seinfeld: Festivus And 'The Airing Of Grievances' Are Alive And Well
We got a lotta problems, and now Florida’s gonna hear about it.
Every year, The Tampa Bay Times does their solemn duty in preserving the spirit of a holiday that is near and dear to secular Seinfeld fans who just want a celebratory reprieve from the dogma and commercialism of the holiday season. Author Daniel O’Keefe’s invention of Festivus, a holiday for the rest of us, is alive and thriving thanks to his son’s popularization of the blessed day in the Seinfeld episode “The Strike” and the preservation efforts of some fine Floridian journalists.
Submissions are open for The Tampa Bay Times’ annual “Airing of Grievances,” and the best gripes will be published on this blessed Festivus day of December 23.
Though the O’Keefe family had been practicing the original version of Festivus since the 1960s, the format that most observers practice comes from the younger O’Keefe’s alterations and enhancements that he made while writing for Seinfeld staff 1997. This included the addition of the “Festivus Pole,” an undecorated metal rod preferably made of aluminum (for its high strength-to-weight ratio,) the notorious “Feats of Strength” that necessitate the wrestling and submission of the patriarch to the ground in order to end the holiday, and, of course, the “Airing of Grievances.”
This sacred sacrament gives Festivus followers the opportunity to voice their crankiest complaints about their families, their coworkers, and the world around them in ceremonial fashion. The Tampa Bay Times has been publishing their readers’ pettiest grievances since 2016, and some of these complaints are spectacularly trivial.
The grievances of years past are all available for commiseration online, and for those who find this time of year to be a stressful exercise in commercialism and sentimentality, hearing others complain about their stupid problems is the best way to blow off some steam.
Though many of these grievances are unique to Floridians, there are plenty of petty gripes in here for “the rest of us” to enjoy as well. And, one week from Friday, we'll get a fresh crop of complaints to enjoy. Happy Festivus to all!