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Merry Christmas, HN
1659 points by Thorentis on Dec 24, 2022 | hide | past | favorite | 221 comments
Just wanted to wish everybody here a Merry Christmas. HN is one of those Internet communities which I would be the saddest to see go, even looking back on other communities in which I've participated over the years.

I see many posts here about loneliness, nihilism, friendships (or lack thereof) and just wanted to let everybody here know that life is never hopeless, and there are always people who care, even if they're thousands of miles away.

Please reach out to loved ones this season and let them know you love them. Life is short, and you never know when the last time you'll be wishing somebody a Merry Christmas will be.

I wish you all the very best for 2023.

You probably missed the "European thread" from a bit earlier: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=34114940 :-)

Merry Christmas to you too!

I did indeed, but you can't have too many Christmas greetings!

In case you're homeless and living in your car rejected by everyone you love because you can't stop drinking, but temporarily holed up in a roadside motel over Christmas with a case of vodka... that was me. It gets better. I now have 5 years sobriety, but I'll never forget that despair I felt and how my mind was in a loop thinking about killing myself.

I've put a temp email in my profile in case you want to reach out. I can't tell you how to stop drinking because it's different for everyone, but I know one small step is knowing you are not alone and recovery is possible.

You can see from my comment history that I have a history of problems with alcohol also.

I have spent many Christmas's holed up in motels alone with a bottle, thinking "what's the point?". You think going through that one year would be enough, but it wasn't enough to learn my lesson.

It's no place to be, but it CAN get better as you've pointed out.

I noted in a prior comment I went from a senior software engineer to a homeless shelter.

I'm back to being a senior software engineer.

Merry Christmas / Happy Holidays everyone.

Same here. I remember thinking the depression/drinking would never end. It did. Life is great now.

Merry Christmas

We're you ever happy prior to the depressive periods?

I think so, although it’s hard to define what happy means.

Nice work man.

Merry Christmas.

Or woman. Or person :)

Alcohol senior engineer who ended up homeless?

In my experience that's always a dude. Women have their lives fall apart in different ways.

I'm willing to make a gendered assumption occasionally.

It’s like the Rust design philosophy. It’s a zero cost abstraction.

You don't have to 'hit rock bottom' to have temporary times of despair in your life. Even if you have a lot of things going for you, we all have times when we feel sad, depressed, lonely, in a rut, overwhelmed, or other negative emotions.

If you find yourself in one of those times, convince yourself that it is only temporary and look for the good. Help someone else out because serving others will give you a boost. Surround yourself with uplifting people. Make small steps if that helps.

Some people give religion a bad rep, but faith, hope, and charity are real and uplift the soul.

I'm one of those people that from a young age gave religion a bad rap.

The problem is nobody ever told me about its utility. I was just dragged to church every Sunday and occasionally lectured on God / etc. It was really easy for a young mind to get cynical about it especially amongst a family that was very preachy.

I wish someone had said "whether or not you believe in THIS god, there is utility in believing in SOMETHING higher than yourself. When you grow up, and are deep into your work life, there will be dark days when you will have nothing that can comfort you, other than the belief that things will get better, and that someone or some thing is more in control than you think".

I wish someone had explained that there is immense utility in the community of religion. That you could end up in your 30s without much of a broad social community. Sure friends, sure family, but not really belonging to any community bigger than those (other than work).

I feel like the religious people around me as a youth really failed. There IS actually a good reason to have a faith. It doesn't have to be because you're afraid of going to hell. There's actual utility in it, mental utility.

If religion was a net negative, it wouldn't have survived for... well, since monkeys grew a rigid spine. The negatives tend to come from people exploiting others' dependency on its usefulness.

Everything has pros and cons, but some other behaviors that have survived for a really long time are murder, war, and (since it came up in this thread) alcoholism, which are not generally very well regarded.

This isn’t to say religion is necessarily like those things, but it does indicate a flaw in the idea that behaviors that stick around mustn’t be so bad.

Murder can kill mass-murderers, and some wars can result in lasting peace. Everything in moderation.

(Alcoholism has a massive component gifted to us by the genetic lottery, so it's really unfair to bundle it with these things.)

Despite this, I bet you agree that murder is a net negative that has survived for longer than religion.

> I wish someone had explained that there is immense utility in the community of religion. That you could end up in your 30s without much of a broad social community. Sure friends, sure family, but not really belonging to any community bigger than those (other than work).

This is actually huge.

I went from being dragged to church as a kid to "screw this I'm an athiest now!".

However as I got older, I realize there is tremendous benefit in exactly what you are pointing out. There is a large community of people who generally care about each other and help each other out, etc.

It doesn't matter the specific religion. I've moved to areas where I attended the local Unitarian Universalist church for this reason. They don't practice any specific religion, but the community aspect of it was a big help, because in the past I've been in situations where I was truly alone and could have used some support. It's comforting to know there is a group of people out there willing to help you if you get in a bind (and you would do likewise to them).

I consider myself a pantheist now, so I will listen to pretty much anything people want to say regarding faith. That's up to them.

You don't need organized religion to have that sense. Please, everyone, read and apply:


The problem is that religion perpetuates itself by adherence to a set of shared beliefs, so it cannot survive a significant proportion of followers saying "these beliefs aren't literally true but the benefits of community and belonging are absolutely worth it."

If faking belief weren't so detrimental to the soul it would be an obvious choice for those people with a stubborn habit of needing proof.

Needing proof certainly can be annoying habit, especially when it comes to matters of meaning and purpose which is what religion provides for a lot of people.

People find meaning and purpose in science too, but of course if you dig far enough you realize that that the proof problem is never really solved.

So, you gotta have faith wherever you turn. One of the reasons I've also become more open to spirituality as time has humbled me a bit.

There’s pie in the sky when you die! Your post is perhaps the biggest load of tripe I’ve seen on this forum.

You may be proving his point…

> we all have times when we feel sad, depressed, lonely, in a rut, overwhelmed, or other negative emotions

I'm in one of those states right now. Unhappy with work. Uncertain about money. Poor health. It really piles up.

> If you find yourself in one of those times, convince yourself that it is only temporary and look for the good.

I'm fortunate enough to know that it's not permanent. I've been in these states before, and I've gotten out of them. It's just hard to see through the fog of uncertainty though. My brain doesn't work well when it's stressed.

For me, it helps to have a project that bring me joy. I've been doing a lot of hobby coding. It's really nice to code for myself again. I haven't really done this much hobby coding for 20 years, and it's like meeting an old friend.

Merry Christmas everyone!

I hope your recovery is speedy my friend, Merry Christmas

Thank you.

I experienced a similar episode but not with alcohol.

I surround myself with things that are of these words: good, love, kindness, peace, serenity, tranquility, purity, loveliness, wholesomeness, cleanliness, positivity, light, fruit, right, proper, meant, should, high.

Reject dark, evil, bad, negative, low, death, darkness, sinister.

It's a duality you need to escape. Pick the good side.

If you surround yourself with light, your life gets brighter. I cannot imagine surrounding myself with anything negative.

If you keep walking where you're going, you might get there. If you pick the side of good, then you should end up somewhere more positive than walking toward darkness.

Free from desire, you realize the mystery.

Caught in desire, you see only the manifestations.

Yet mystery and manifestations arise from the same source.

This source is called darkness.

Darkness within darkness.

The gateway to all understanding.

Is this original daoism or did you derive it from something?

Yes, this is from the start of the Tao Te Ching. Ursula le Guin rendered it thus:

> For the unwanting soul sees what's hidden, while the ever-wanting soul sees only what it wants. Two things, one origin, but different in name, whose identity is mystery. Mystery of all mysteries! the door to the hidden.

Is this this the Mitchell translation?

I have my health, a career and I have my parents but this has been the hardest of holiday seasons. While I'm blessed, I feel like I'm falling behind peers who are are in serious relationships and starting families of their own; guess it's one of the first times I've felt lonely and the world/reality closing in.

This thread has been a good read; to me its a reminder to charish what I have and remember to look forward to tomorrow. Some Sun would sure help...

3 years ago, at my family's Christmas dinner, I shared that my wife had separated and filed for divorce. Worst Christmas ever. I didn't eat anything, threw up, and don't remember much apart from being depressed, angry, and confused.

I just got remarried this year and can confirm that tomorrow will be better if you allow those that love you to help, and choose long term betterment and stability over short term fixing happiness.

Better to be single than in a bad relationship. Take your time finding a good one. Then cherish only a supportive and kind partner.

Hey, it's not a race. And noone's path or destination is the same. You will be OK, don't worry.

> It gets better.

This is one of the the truths that people need to hear during difficult times throughout their lives.

And, after a history of things seeming hopeless but turn out not to be, sometimes people can remember and believe when they tell themselves, "This, too, shall pass."

We modern advanced humans are surprisingly resilient in many ways, and we need to keep ancient primitive programming from precluding that.

I'll be reaching five years myself in April. It is nice to have some time in sobriety, but it is still one day at a time for me.

You deserve a medal of honor. Thank you.

Thanks, this is the easy part. The hard part is asking for help. I still haven't figured out why asking for help is so hard.

If you need help, ask. There is nothing wrong with needing help. People want to help.

I was at a really low point financially and asked for help from a large group of friends to support me and the business I was trying to build and while many friends reached out to help, one of my closest friends said I should be ashamed of myself for begging for money like that when I could just easily go get a job.

I think the hard part of asking for help is that I already feel soooo vulnerable just asking, even the slightest slight can seem like the most brutal attack and drown out the help I do receive.

So I try to remind myself that often if someone is asking for help, they may have had to muster a lot of courage even to ask. Thank you for reminding me of that.

I'm happy you're doing better.

I'm spending this Christmas alone, and boy, oh boy, do I hope others aren't going through the same.

Merry Christmas kilroy <3

Why are the holidays so bad for this? I guess a combination of no sun and stress. I am always the most depressed during the holidays.

I think for many there is an aspect in which, at some point during early childhood, they did experience good/joyous holidays with a loving family.

Unfortunately, for some, that does not continue into teenage years/young adulthood/the rest of life. For a variety of reasons.

Those memories & the potential yearning for them do not particularly go away for most, it seems to be part of the human condition. Methods of coping with the loss of meaningful holidays are vast, but substance abuse seems quite common.

While I do not know how universally true this is - I can only say I’ve heard many an anecdote being from a military family & I’m currently living on a marine base - it seems similar to soldiers fated to die gruesome deaths in foreign lands screaming for their mothers in their final moments. A somewhat universal experience. Maybe I’m thinking too deeply into it though.

Thanks for putting yourself out there and offering a way for people to reach out to you. Only through great suffering we learn to cultivate selflessness, and eventually grow into better people. Merry Christmas.

Thanks, it was an impulsive thing to do, but it was a good impulse. I didn't think it through and think that I might be spending my Christmas answering emails, but people understood I was trying to reach the person at the end of their rope so didn't bother me with less critical emails.

I can't say I reached that level of despair, but on multiple occasions I was inches away (often literally) from alcohol destroying everything. I'll reach 5 years sober next July.

OP here: Good for you and now we do the work of preventing relapse. I've been told by many people I respect that it's a daily practice so I don't "forget" that I can't drink like other people.

I'm from Ukraine.

This is the hardest Christmas I've ever had in my life. Because of the war, they had to move to a safe place and constantly incur large expenses. Unfortunately, the war ruined all plans to launch my startup and a programming language that would help people be more smart and free, which I have been doing for 10 years. I tried to work on a startup while working at work, but the problems associated with the war, electricity and the Internet made it very expensive to exist. Unfortunately, the people I counted on and whom I helped to make a career also let me down. Also, the support of the Ukrainians was not as great as in the media in my case, I applied to many places. Now I am left without finances and without a job, this is the first time in my career in 12 years of remote work.

Maybe you suggest a place where I can apply in such a situation, maybe there are funds that help Ukrainians? Or maybe a place where I can get quickly find a job and get payout?

All hope is in God. Merry Christmas

Here is my project, any suggestion?

Site: https://animationcpu.com/

HN topic: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=32181251

My email in profile

> Maybe you suggest a place where I can apply in such a situation, maybe there are funds that help Ukrainians? Or maybe a place where I can get quickly find a job and get payout?

Many really good academic institutions are offering jobs for Ukrainians. Some might be willing to offer remote work if you are not intending to relocate.

It might not be ideal if you are in industry, but it might be a quick way to get decent income and a well recognized brand name on your CV.

Given that you have a CS background, it should be quite easy to land an offer. Just ping me (email on my profile) if you have any difficulties finding positions or need some suggestions.

Suggestion: Given that you live in Ukraine I assume English isn't your first language, but but find someone who's a native speaker (or as good) and have them proofread your website. If you can't find anybody, at least run it through a software spell/grammar checker.

I spotted two typos about 15 seconds in ("so peoples gets mobility" and "imediatelly") and that will put people off a lot because it makes the project feel unprofessional and low effort.

Additional feedback ignoring the first impression issues:

Download link being TestFlight is ... not ideal.

The website is super vague? What exactly is your app? It seems to be a mobile IDE for your proprietary programming language?

Committing to a new language, _especially_ a proprietary language where the only IDE is on iOS is a HUGE choice. You need way more details on why someone should choose this over learning Objective-C/Swift. See, for example, Rust's homepage that explains the advantages Rust brings: https://www.rust-lang.org/

Your pricing structure is vague and it's not exactly clear what the value-add of the paid products are. What does it mean to have a "Verified account"? Is this also a social network?

Yes, TestFlight is the main problem now, because there are still bugs blocking the publication in the AppStore.

As I wrote above, this site is a draft.

Mobile application for where users can create games and apps on mobile devices. For this, a programming language was created.

For example, in a war or other extreme conditions, when there is no electricity, this is critical.

Now it's only iOS, and then there will be Android, Web and Desktop.

There are other meanings here, for this I made a separate topic with details. https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=32181251

A part of the project is open source and I want to open the whole project, but for this I need more knowledge and suggestions.

Those who buy the paid version will receive coins with which they can buy assets for their applications. Details on this are yet to be expanded.

Yes, this is a social network for developers and a marketplace for selling apps.

This is also a web3 system where people can trade coins on an exchange, I would like to get a stable coin for which people can sell their assets and exchange for Ethereum. Here is an example of a web3 wallet mobile app created using this application and programming language. It was the world's first mobile 3D crypto wallet. https://twitter.com/Web3Wallet/status/1506964780346716165

Thanks, I know Rust lang :)

To be clear, the point I'm trying to make is that your potential customers aren't going to be digging around on HN posts looking for details on what the software does. After they spend a few minutes and can't figure anything out they will leave - never to return. This information needs to be prominently on the website: what your product is (much more clearly) and why people should choose it over alternatives.

Thanks for the answer. Totally agree, the site is still a draft, because there were not enough resources and it was the last in the task queue. This is a big project built from scratch. There is still no application in the app store and no marketing for this site. I am also making a second site with a description and documentation of the programming language. I will definitely correct this and probably will immediately check for grammatical errors.

Use chatgpt to rewrite :)

Agree, I can lose Twitter, Reddit, what ever. If I lose HN I feel that would affect me the most. I appreciate a community that is not focused on politics, news, and what ever nonsense is happening in the world. Just focused on a core topic revolving around computers/technology/startups.

Merry Christmas and any other holiday you may celebrate at this time.


I love Reddit for different reasons, but there’s something really unique about this community that I really hope it never loses (and it hasn’t yet so I’m optimistic!)

Happy Christmas!

Happy Holidays HN.

I’ve spent Christmas alone more than I care to admit over the last decade but this community never fails to offer insight, inspiration, and compassion.

This is a great community and I look forward to another decade of being privileged to be a member of it.

>> I’ve spent Christmas alone more than I care to admit over the last decade but this community never fails to offer insight, inspiration, and compassion.

This is my first ever Christmas eve alone. I'll see my family tomorrow, but no more inlaws, and my kid is with her mom tonight. Divorce is.... different. I've got wine and a blanket.

I'm getting back to FLOSS. Dropped a PR on OBS Studio yesterday. I hope it gets accepted as my Christmas present to the Free Software community. Take care peeps!

Just checking in to say you take care too and it’ll be tomorrow before you know it. Your kid will get to be super excited a second time tomorrow when he sees you at the front door!

Congrats on getting back to floss. I keep trying to but it’s been hard to make the time this year. Hopefully 2023 will give me a little extra time for it!

Happy Christmas mate :-)

>> Congrats on getting back to floss. I keep trying to but it’s been hard to make the time this year.

One thing I see clearly in open source is that people have lives. Participation varies a lot even among great contributors. Some very active people disappear for months only to return later. When you realize it's because everyone has a life outside where we see them, it makes them seem much more human than say coworkers in an office where we show up regardless of other things.

Get back to it when you can, or when it's good for you.

What's FLOSS?

Free/Libre Open Source Software.

“Libre” is French for free as in freedom so it’s sometimes added to emphasise the “free” means freedom of use not necessarily free in price.

Christmas is one of the most difficult holidays for all the people who are different, or grew up in a emotionally/physically abusive family.

No one is alone! Merry Xmas HN!

I like to think of HN as a family of its own. Sure, we're all different and we come from all sorts of different backgrounds, but we all come together and get along. It's really amazing, and it's hard to find in other places online.

I so agree. I also love how it's content vs form focused.

Merry Christmas - I agree HN is the best. I don't have a ton of techy friends, and since I and the friends I do have have young kids, I don't get much time to nerd out with them. HN is a great alternative and has managed to keep civil discussion alive. Looking forward to geeking out to lots of nerd news with you all in 2023.

Merry Christmas! This post hits pretty close to home, particularly the bit about how ephemeral life is. My father passed earlier this year after a long battle with COPD (encourage your friends/family to stop smoking if they do!), but because it was expected I was blessed to have the opportunity to prepare and have many conversations I will remember until my last day.

The material can come and go. Family and friendships, relationships, and what blessings you can bestow upon others are ultimately what matters most.

If you know someone who will be alone this Christmas, and you have the means, please consider ensuring they won't spend it by themselves.


Many folks who smoke know the dangers, but don’t know how to quit, or fear being miserable.

I’d highly recommend offering a book from https://www.allencarr.com/

They might not read it for a few years, but when they do, it’s the best way to quit.

We greatly (grossly?) underestimate the power of relying on external help, also. That's why ANY resource you can get a hold of is important.

In my dad's case he had many false starts toward quitting. He did, eventually, in 2017 but after 45 years the toll on his health was irreversible. I remember a conversation with his pulmonologist just a month or two before he was admitted to hospice: His general health was so deteriorated that he was no longer a candidate for any treatment—including lung transplant. Not that I think he would have gone along with it in the first place.

To underscore Gavan's point, one of my dad's extra duties when he was in the USAF (as an electrical engineer) was health and safety. He used to lecture, ironically, on the dangers of smoking. He knew what it would do, but addiction is powerful.

Thank you for sharing!

To everyone whose response is, "I'm not a Christian, but...," why dump on other people's good wishes? If a holiday is about free time, good food, meeting friends, and general expressions of good will, who cares what the historical origin was? When I lived in the Middle East, I always responded to "Happy Eid" in kind, not "I'm not a Muslim, but..." I accepted the holiday in its intended spirit and I honestly enjoyed Eid over there as much as Christmas in America.

Not a Christian, but appreciate the sentiment. Family is all dead so it's just another weekend for me, no big deal. Hope the rest of you enjoy your festivities, whatever it is you're doing.

I enjoy that the commercialization of American Christmas has, a little bit, freed it from religion. Now it’s just the default Western end-of-year holiday! And we can all enjoy that :)

Let Festivus began! Airing of grievances, feats, of strength, the aluminum pole, and hanging of the clock in a bag.

No animal sacrifice, self hatred, or persecution of non-believers required.

Many iconic American Christmas songs were authored by Jews.

Like "It's the most wonderful time of the year", what a banger song.

Welcome to America, where everyone gets along just fine.


I'm also not a Christian and also without family, but it's nice to have a day off and to take some time to make some homecooked food, something I enjoy but don't usually find the time to do. Holidays are a cultural excuse to make something deliberately not "just another weekend", it doesn't have to be a religious thing.

The Christians repurposed the existing holiday date themselves, feel free to return the favor and make your own arbitrary Saturnalia feast. :)

Sorry to hear about your family - I hope you have some community around you.

Being the “uncle” of the community (who isn’t related to anyone by blood) is actually a pretty fulfilling role sometimes.

> just another weekend for me

except a solstice just happened!

(sol invictus ftw, in the northern hemisphere)

Is it coincidental that cultures and associated religions seem curiously to align holidays around now? is it maybe related to the physical reality of the earth's orbit and inclination of axis?

It is probably not coincidence, but the existence of solstice celebrations that new religions attempted to go-opt/overwrite with their own event.

It should not be lost on anyone that this holiday comes immediately after the winter solstice, the darkest day of the year.

The future is hopeful, and the days have already started getting brighter.

Merry Christmas, HN!

Except in the southern hemisphere.

Over twenty years in Australia and I still haven't gotten used to it (being 32C / 89.6F) on Christmas. So I do miss that, to be honest.

The difference to my family's place in Norway right now (-21C/-5.8F) is stark. As a child, coming out of summer, it would get colder and colder, you'd start seeing the snow .. and then soon after there'd be the magic of Christmas.

In the southern hemisphere, there's just nothing of the same. Oh well, no need to clear the driveway to drive in the morning at least.

Merry Christmas to everyone here. My first as a fully separated man after a two decade marriage/relationship fell through a year ago. Split custody of kids, I had them on Xmas Eve (the main one for me as a Norwegian) and also in the morning today Sunday / Christmas Day. House is going to be very quiet when they're gone for the day, but the peace in the house has made it all worth it. It's funny when you finally realise that the best thing you can do for them is to stop fighting for something that can't be saved - and you know everyone will come out stronger/ better as a result.

Does snow related theme seep down there as most of the largest economy are above the equator?

Yes. Snow-related imagery is the way Christmas is represented in Australia.

This is my first summer Christmas (down in Chile), it feels quite different! They also celebrate more today on the 24th and do presents at midnight

We also do a lot of beach going.

It still feels crazy for me to be in shorts and putting the barbie on to cook some steaks.

While the northern hemisphere have a celebration in the middle of winter, the young here are preparing for festival season and are on summer school holidays until end of January.

It's a topsy turvy world.

//Plus we can see the Milky Way and far too many satellites to feel truely comfortable looking up at night.

+1 to the better view of the Milky Way. Sat visibility is roughly the same though.

Christmas celebrations in the Southern Emisphere are a curious legacy of colonialism. In the same way we still celebrate Saturn every week because the Romans conquered the whole of Europe and North-Africa, people over there will celebrate Christ in the middle of summer probably forever - just because Europeans planted their flags in every nook and cranny.

The northern hemisphere has 90% of the world’s population. It was a pretty safe general statement.

Just feeling a little left out.

I'm southern hemisphere too - thinking 'seasonal solstice' works for me...

Summer* solstice

Southern hemisfere masterrace reporting in

I WAS raised as a Christian but "my" Christmas is not today, lol. But Merry Christmas anyway! I raised a little kid and just very recently she was running around my computer with a screwdriver trying to remove a shiny heatsink from the motherboard. A couple of days ago she flew in and was busy applying for PhD in math and passing interviews in Haskell. WTF did I do.

I wish a happy and merry Christmas to each and every one of you, may your celebration of the birth of Jesus be a pleasant one.

Happy holidays to all. I can sincerely say that even though I’m not precisely on the target demographic for HN, it is by far the most valuable and pleasant community in the internet. Cheers to all.

Merry C:\hristmas (the PC term for Christmas)

This comment is layered like an onion and I love it.

Go aDore Jesus Christ, there is bound to be a perpetual Adoration chapel somewhere near you. Find Him and go to Him, the Nativity is a prefigurement of this merciful Gift. You will never feel lonely again because you will realize you never were.

Ave Maria, gratia plena, Dominus tecum. Benedicta tu in mulieribus, et benedictus fructus ventris tui, Iesus. Sancta Maria, Mater Dei, ora pro nobis peccatoribus, nunc et in hora mortis nostrae. Amen.

Mery Christmas, Everyone.

Merry Solstice Substitute! HN. I wasn't brought up Christian either, but loved the tradition with friends - and giving gifts under the mid-winter evergreen tree. Wishing everyone good things in 2023.

Happy Soltice to you, too. I cringe that we have to end a tree's life so that we may maintain some tradition. Having said that, our kitten loves hanging out under the tree and smelling its pine needles. Still, I can't get over the fact that we end a tree's life for no reason at all (not that we need it to build shelter or something for our survival)

The real trees everyone I know uses come from Christmas tree farms grown specifically for this purpose. They wouldn’t exist otherwise.

Happy solstice to you as well. My mother thought the same and got an evergreen in a pot which we decorated for many years until it became too big and was planted in front of the kitchen window.

I don’t know a single person who still used a real tree. The artificial ones look incredible these days and are infinitely more sustainable, less messy, look better longer, and can be chosen to suit the room perfectly. If you’re a nerd like me you can even embed them with WS2812 RGBs and an ESP32 WLED controller, which would be way too much effort for a temporary “real” tree.

I don’t believe a Christmas tree made from fossil fuels is more sustainable than my certified organic Christmas tree grown less than 5 km from my home.

That being said I know most trees are sprayed regularly, then wrapped in plastic netting and transported long distances to a Christmas market.

that made me wonder about lifetime cost - I've just donated my wood, wire & ff-plastic tree of 20 years to another home, I don't have an answer tho' ...

It’s a good approach to carbon capture :) grow and pile it up!

Merry Christmas y'all. HN has done a lot for me over time, though I mostly lurk. I hope everyone here has a great holiday and a happy new year.

I'm not literally alone on Christmas, but as I've gotten older and moved away, the family I used to spend the holidays with is either across the country or passed on. If you're not to that stage yet, please do your future self a favor and spend a little longer talking to your family. Take an extra photo, or ask them about some family history (and maybe record it). I really wish I had done that.

Stay warm!

May 2023 be a good year for all of us. Thanks for engaging discussions, inspiring comments, and for being a beacon of interesting things in a web that is becoming increasingly bland. I appreciate the views of this community, even as they are challenging my own! Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Happy Christmas y'all, for those of you worried about what 2023 is going to bring, just kick back for a week and enjoy the holidays, the new year will take care of itself when the time comes.

And for those of you recently laid off work, sending you positive vibes and hope you guys land on your feet soon.

Merry Christmas! Let's hope and pray to whichever deity, for peace; And an extra prayer or thought for the Ukrainians.

Merry Christmas! I'm from Ukraine. Thanks. I hope God hears. Please check my comment, maybe you can suggest something https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=34121905

Merry Christmas!

Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah.

Lol it feels a little cliched and HNish to immediately disagree, but: if I've learned anything it's that no online community is holy. Many have come and gone in my life. They are beautiful and offer a lot - but always in the context of sitting and staring at a screen. I think they ultimately aren't as valuable as they seem, at least compared with the real world.

Merry Christmas, and yes humans are stupid and petty and cruel but each one of us has the spark to be greater. My wish is for each of us have the courage to try to be just a little bit better than they were the day before.

મેરી ક્રિસમસ! (Merry Christmas) From Junagadh, Gujarat, India [1].

1 - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Junagadh

Merry Christmas! I give to you my favorite Christmas song of all time


Mr. McClintock, you absolute genius.

Merry Christmas from the airport bar!

May your 2023s be full of family, grace, and good fortune.

Merry Christmas, HN! :-)

Time to reach out and appreciate/tell the people and connections that make you a better person.

"All I Want For Christmas Is You" in the style of the Wii Shop theme: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pDGl2albRHk

Merry Christmas!

Waiting for my dinner to cook in a shared kitchen of my rented home, my friends on skiing trips, my family on the other side of the earth, and my girl friend thousands of miles away, I have all the Christmas decorations to myself for now. And it's a heart-warming moment seeing a "Merry Christmas" post here. A reminder that on this internet-connected globe, even when physically isolated, we are not truly alone.

Stay happy and stay healthy!

Merry Christmas HN, and especially to Dang. This is a wonderful community, a rare gem on the Internet and I feel fortunate to be part of it.

Merry Christmas everyone, I love HN and all the people here. Just absolutely excellent community with literally 0 complaints coming from me. I’ve learned so much here just by reading comments and submissions and occasionally posting Ask HN posts. You all helped shape the way I think in a really positive way and I’m grateful for that. Thank you.

Have fun and stay safe!

I wish me the very best for 2023 as well, and I've realized life is actually out in the real world and if they're thousands of miles away, go visit them. Otherwise you just want to endorse that shithead Zuckerberg's perspective that the future is online. It isn't and kid, there are things worse than death...

This is a big thing I realized this year. Screens, keyboards and even the Turing marchine are temporary steps towards allowing us to control the material universe with our written words. Why would anyone want to go into a virtual world that can never be as rich as the “real one.”

I cant help but think of the millions of animals that needlessly die for human consumption around times like these. Makes xmas look more like a tragedy than a celebration. All the unhappy people being forced to spend time with "loved ones" they cant stand because of marketing?

merry christmas.

Merry Christmas to all! And to all a good night!

Thank you all. This was actually one of the most enjoyable comment threads I’ve ever read through on HN. I’m not sure why. I sure do appreciate all of your different perspectives. Well wishes again to everyone.

Merry Christmas, my incredibly brilliant HN family! HN has been a home now for 13 years and I can't wait to see what engaging discussions we have in 2023. Life is never hopeless. If any of you need a friend -- my personal email is in my profile.

Merry Chrysler, thank you HN. I hope I can be as positive an experience on someone else as others have been on me. It's hard to find such a high density of smart and experienced people in one community. I really appreciate having an environment that pushes to me constantly grow and continue learning new things.

To be clear, because humor gets lost sometimes, mispronouncing Christmas is a reference to this vine. There's nothing deeper, it's just funny to me. https://www.youtube.com/shorts/_Z-Nu351j58

Here's the Grateful Dead Yule log for anyone looking for background music https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jClpJmljZLg

Happy Christmas Eve! I agree, HN is a great community.

So, what movie are we watching tonight?

I have a penchant for The Polar Express because I love how deep in the uncanny valley it goes, plus the absurdity of Santa appearing as a totalitarian dictator before his adoring fanatic minions somehow gives me great joy. Wandering around the abandoned factory floors and listening to the elf's last minute wrapping up of business reminds me of more than a few Christmas Eve's at work in large office buildings trying to get that last bit of code pushed before the break.

But, you know, Elf is good too.

Happy Holidays! Sad today that my mother has COVID so my wife and I can't go and see her, but we are already planning a badass holiday party for after the new year! Spending the day sending messages and relaxing with my dog. :) OP and the entire HN community, hope you have a great time to spend with friends, family, loved ones, online communities, or just relaxing with some well deserved time off, with hopefully some great food or snacks in the mix.

You can see your mom if you want.

I can! That is possible. She's not comfortable with that and wishes to quarantine.

In the spirit of Christmas can someone please help ... Or send a prayer... I never had to ask for anything before. Please see the URL


Merry Christmas, HN. One of the best communities in the internet. Hope you have a good time with your friends and family with inner peace and joy.

Thanks to all of you for making life just a little more interesting and fun. Merry Christmas. Let's make 2023 the best yet.

In the spirit of Christmas can someone please help...or send a prayer..


Merry Christmas! Happy Holidays! I hope for an interesting 2023 with lots of cool stuff.

I wish for more Show HN and technical articles. :)

Grant, we beseech You, almighty God, that this new light of Your Incarnate Word which shines upon our minds by faith, may be reflected in our deeds. Through the same Jesus Christ, thy Son, Our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end.

— Collect, In Nativitatis Domini in aurora

God Bless, you. Stay strong.

To keep a community like HN to be truly informative, helpful and civic is actually not too hard: put aside polarized politics and chill, then discuss.

other social networks divide more than unite communities, sadly, mostly due to politics and ideology differences.

Thanks HN, please stay the same for the next decade. Happy holiday to all.

HN is a community that, while sometimes has a focus on other non-tech things, is still very much tech-centered.

Even though I sometimes don't like the vibe here, HN has been a source of articles to nurture my programming and tech interests since a year ago.

I wish everyone a great Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Can someone please explain to me what’s special about Christmas for those who celebrate ? Is it special symbolically ? To me it feels like you get to see your family and maybe have 2-3 days off, which is something most people do many times a year, usually during the weekends.

Christmas celebrates the birth or nativity of Jesus. The coming of the promised savior. Jesus' death and resurrection, religiously speaking, reconciled mankind with God. Jesus represents reconciliation and peace. Like the lost prodigal son who returns to his father and is welcomed with open arms.

That’s what the Christian holiday is yes, but that’s not really what a lot of Americans (including my family) are actually celebrating. It’s about getting together with family, exchanging gifts and good food, and reflecting on the year.

We do the lights and the tree, not a single mention of Jesus or God though. The overlap of Americanized Christmas and religion in the Venn diagram is much smaller than you would think.

I hope you find room for Christ in your life. He suffered and died so you can be saved.

The effect is probably more that everyone in your life makes time for it.

There’s no scheduling conflicts for work, there’s nothing to get done…except getting together and appreciating each other.

…which can be its own mission. The holidays can be stressful, but the important thing is the time we spend together.

And yes, depending what you believe there can be a lot of symbology overlaid onto it. Ymmv on the symbology.

There's no date or time which is objectively special, of course. Historical accident has simply given many societies a common period in the middle of Northern hemisphere winter in which we band together to banish the cold and darkness for a time, to remember that light and warmth will come, and to take some time (however brief) away from the constant cruel work that survival requires.

Of course, many people don't need a festival like this any more, and it's easy to forget why it's there. Various religions have piggy-backed off this practice to celebrate specific things at the same time. The Northern European cultures in particular were extremely infectious and have exported the practice to many geographic locations where it's neither cold nor dark at this time of year. For many people, the "constant cruel work" is no longer either constant or cruel. But at least in the UK we have long memories, and some things are worth remembering!

(Also, go and read "Hogfather", by Terry Pratchett. As I seem to remember Yudkowsky said, though presumably in much better wording, Terry Pratchett's death is all the reason you could need to resolve to end death forever. Hogfather, in particular, I think is one of his crowning works and I sometimes choke up a bit just thinking about the book.)

It’s just fun. I have zero religious background nor do any of my family yet we bloody love Christmas. Decorating the house, lights in the yard, seasonal food that you don’t eat at other times (you “could” but having it only at Christmas is the entire point).

It is near the new year. Usually people take day offs or save their off days for these days and combine them. From 20th of december to first week of january people relax, don't work and see family they didn't see over a year. It is more of an excuse to celebrate stuff than anything religious to be honest.

Its special for me because it is the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ. (I know it probably wasn't the real date). It's a great time together with family and remember.

for me, it was having kids that made it special, I enjoyed the atmosphere, extra attention at friends houses as a kid - but the anticipation and excitement of my kids transformed a festival I didn't grow up liking. Sure, you do stuff for and with your kids during the year - but this became a two-way time - that has endured to their adulthood (not just the 'presents').

My family isn't religious, but Christmas is a day when we all exchange gifts. Many people get 2-3 days off, but rarely at the same time, especially if you have college-aged relatives that are away at school most of the year. Many people also have to work, even on the Weekend, but most places are closed on Christmas, which also makes getting together easier.

Isn't there anyone who knows what Christmas is all about?


Its mostly that, and the fact that you live up to a day where family comes together. Also knowing that everyone around you is kinda doing the same, like a common moment.

For non religious people gift giving is fun.

From Nigeria and wishing everyone a merry Christmas and a prosperous New year ahead.

I have to say that this is an amazing community full of really awesome people. I never regretted being a part of this community and I pray we all keep growing in leaps and bounds.

Merry Christmas from Logan Airport, where my flight to SF is now 5 hours delayed.

Merry Christmas, happy holidays and the best of the season to all. Thanks dang.

Love this community and huge thanks to Dang for keeping it humming!

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas Everyone; Hope that everyone in the community has a great 2023. Take some time off, I know its hard sometimes but it becomes more important around the holidays.

Feliz navidad, amigos

Peace and love for you all in 2023. Merry Christmas.

Cheers, happy holidays. I've learned a lot from this community this year & every year, and look forward to what 2023 well bring.

Thank you all for everything I find on here, and for being the wonderfully brilliant group of people you are.

Merry Christmas HN

Happy Hanukkah!

I hope you (yes you, the person reading this right now) have a very merry Christmas, and a happy new year!

Merry Christmas, all. It is awesome of those who have shared their life stories here, to have done it.

Happy holidays too.

It’s nice to still have people such as yourself in the world — Merry Christmas as well!

Merry Christmas HN! Is there an official discord for realtime chatting with this group?

Love coming here too and seeing what the community is talking about on a given day.

I hope everyone is able to enjoy a few actual days off and has a great new year!

Merry christmas and thanks for being such an awesome community

How many of you on HN - like me - do not celebrate Christmas?

Merry Christmas!

Happy Holidays!

Good Vibes and Blessings!

Io Saturnalia!

The days are getting longer now, the sun will shine again.

Merry Christmas to you all and HN too! Have a lovely time!

Merry Christmas to all! Wish this community the best.

Merry Christmas HN!

Merry Christmas y'all! Have a great 2023.

I feel bad we didn't get dang anything.

Thank you and merry Christmas to all of you

> life is never hopeless

Only a Sith deals in absolutes.

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas you beautiful soul

Happy holidays to everyone on HN!

Merry Christmas! Wesołych Świąt!

Merry Christmas, everyone on HN!

Love you all. Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to you all :)

Merry Christmas to you all.

Merry Christmas Ya'll

Happy holidays y'all

Cheers! Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas! Be well

Merry Christmas to all!

Merry Christmas all :)

Merry Christmas friend

Merry Christmas, all!

Happy Christmas, all!

HN is the best indeed

Merry Christmas all!

Merry Christmas HN!

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!

Happy Christmas!

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas

Happy holidays

This probably not the right place to post this but on a tangent- is nihilism intrinsically bad? It seems like the most logical thing, nothing has meaning and everything just is.

Nihilism isn't intrinsically bad no. When I speak to nihilists it seems like that's just who they are, in the same way some people are funny or gay or what have you. There are toxic and healthy reactions to nihilism. It's perhaps a precarious philosophy, but life is precarious. It's entirely possible to have a joyful and vibrant sort of nihilism.

So this hotbed of liberalism -- high tech SV -- says "Merry Christmas"? What happened to the war on Xmas?

Happy Kwanzaa, Joyful Festivus, and may the winter solstice bring a great harvest!

It’s almost as if the war on Christmas isn’t really a policy of liberalism ;)

Most people eventually recognise that intent matters. Consider that the people you see who mock Christmas are probably a younger demographic realising for the first time that the date might be a little arbitrary - but that doesn’t mean the spirit of the holiday isn’t real.

What's with the downvotes? Just a bit of cheeky sarcasm

It doesn’t come across in the text - it just reads like bitterness at the popularity of the holiday.

Well I suck at text. Shoulda posted it as a tiktok.

The "war on Christmas" was always bullshit, a meme deliberately propagated by cultural conservatives to make other cultural conservatives feel threatened.

A very merry Feast of Isaac of Woolsthorpe to you.

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