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If the sweater fits, wear it

Scripps Howard News Service
We rise in defense of the Christmas sweater, a festive addition to the holiday that is unfairly maligned and ridiculed.
The web is full of sites promising ěUgly Christmas Sweatersî and even one promising ěHilariously Ugly Christmas Sweaters.î Let us be clear: In season they are not ugly; out of season is another matter altogether.
A young Norwegian, Lars Holdhus, has collected well over 100 Christmas sweaters and is seeking more, a hobby that prompted Britainís The Sun newspaper to label him ěa Christmas crackpot.î
Holdhus models 89 sweaters on christmas-sweatercollection.com, so judge for yourself.
His sweaters are a representative gamut of that art form ó reindeer, Santa Clauses, Christmas trees, wreaths, snowflakes, pastoral winter scenes, stockings, snowmen, cute animals, wrapped presents. Sometimes the sweater is embellished with small bells.
A current TV commercial features a man being ridiculed for his sweater, a black-and-white number featuring a cat on ice skates. His wife explains patiently, ěCats donít skate.î
Oh, wrong, TV lady. Maybe not ice skates, but roller skates and skate boards. Christmas is not the time to dwell on the literal; it is the season of fantasy, when reindeer fly and bulky sweaters do not make your butt look big, not if theyíre of a really distracting design.
The Christmas sweater is much like the holiday itself ó good humored; colorful, garish; over the top, even improbable ó and it only comes around once a year.

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