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Experience community for Christmas

Christmas has a mixed reputation. Sure, it’s the season of love and of giving, of stepping outside yourself, of the world becoming a little bit brighter. But for those who feel alienated for any reason — whether they’ve stepped away from their religious faith; or they’re separated from family, by circumstance or choice; or they simply find themselves alone in a strange place with no way to reach out — it can go from being the most wonderful time of year to the darkest. […]

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Album Review: Chuck Henderson — Christmas

Chuck Henderson Christmas Dear readers: For the purposes of this review, I broke one of my personal cardinal rules. I listened to Christmas music before Dec. 1. And then I listened again, and again, and again. And I liked it. Chuck Henderson’s Christmas, despite the name of the holiday gracing the title of the disc […]

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UR Here: Finding the nativity in your own community

Whether one believes in the literal or religious truth of the Christmas story or not, it remains a powerful and influential tale, obviously for Christians, but even for many non-Christians. Over the years, as the Yuletide celebration commences, I have often discovered new ideas in this simple yet profound tale. This year, the story of the nativity has helped me understand something about what is important for community. […]

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UR Here: Home is where the hygge is

Hygge

Hygge (roughly pronounced hö-geh, though with a little more “oo” on that umlauted o) is a Danish word that defies English translation. Its closest Anglo analogue is probably cozy, but that doesn’t fully capture what hygge is all about. Hygge is a feeling, a condition, but Danes tend to define it more by action and situation than abstractions. […]

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Iowa City Weekender: December 15-17

Hello, and welcome to the Weekender! As the semester begins to wrap up for the university, the town starts to shift into slight hibernation for a week until it pops back into full form for the coming new year. This weekend will be your last chance to get out before the hibernation begins, so make […]

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Prairie Pop: 12 Days…To Drown Out Holiday Muzak with Twisted X-mas Rock.

Organized religion is responsible for more bloodshed than any institution in human history, but Christmas music is its biggest sin. I hate those songs—and the hegemony they hold over the airwaves, public spaces and every nook and cranny of our subconscious in the weeks leading up to Jesus’s birthday. Nevertheless, I make an exception for […]

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