What the Hell is Boxing Day

I can usually figure out what the holidays that are shown on calendars are for, but this one has always stumped me.  I am aware of Cinco de Mayo, and Kwanza, but I think that the British just made-up Boxing Day, because they got jealous of us Americans celebrating Thanksgiving.  One story that I read said that Boxing Day originated as a day off for servants, who would return to their homes with a box of delicacies that their masters had given them which was filled with things they could use for their families.  Another story attributes this day to the church and alms for the poor, where a box would be placed outside the church on Christmas Day and opened on the 26th.  I’d heard that Boxing Day may have something to do with Cricket, as there is some type of box that the batter stands in.  I actually never gave it much thought to this holiday before, but today I decided to put my gloves on and see what all the fuss is about.

The day after Christmas, is Boxing Day, although this holiday is not observed in the United States and maybe that is because we never participated in the Boxer Rebellion in China.  People give away their leftovers from Christmas Day, and you might end up with a baked ham, mince pies with butter brandy or a slice of Christmas cake if you are lucky.  I think that I will start my own Boxing Day tradition, which will involve cracking open a cold beer and listening to Grateful Dead videos all day long.  Since December 26th is also the feast of Saint Stephen this makes a lot of sense to me.

Written for FOWC with Fandango – Lucky.

23 thoughts on “What the Hell is Boxing Day

  1. Boxing Day is when all the fights start 🙂
    It’s traditionally a big sporting day over here in the U.K. Only, this year there won’t be any crowds watching! Plus the fact that a lot of events have had to be cancelled.

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  2. Now I’m a *insert whatever term for Americans is utilized by people in Britain – “Yankee”, colonist, uh, AMERICAN?)* but I did read this definition of boxing day once. And if this post was a wind-up? You got me again. But then YOU got this possibly redundant comment in reply.

    Boxing day was the day that squires and other upper class took around boxes of food and perhaps presents to their staff and the people who worked on their estates. The servants would work Christmas Day for their ‘masters’, but Boxing Day was for the servants’ celebrations.

    Now my dead hubby would embrace Glyn’s definition (and since Glyn IS British, he should know) of it being a sporting kind of day. I understand a lot of the titled in England go out shooting for Boxing Day too. Hubby would have watched actual boxing. Me? I played whatever version of computer game I had squiirreled away for such occasions, so for me? It could be called “GAMING day..”

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      1. You have written, in the past, some posts that were such good FICTIONAL stories that I thought they were about your own experiences. That’s all. And I hope I was able to answer your question a little bit..

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