Surviving Christmas

by Elinor Crosby, Head Editor, INALJ Nova Scotia

Surviving Christmas

elinorcrosby01For a variety reasons, I don’t celebrate Christmas. We didn’t celebrate it when I was growing up, so I have no Christmas traditions or even any emotional attachment to Christmas at all. Christmas mainly makes me feel awkward, which in turn makes me just want to hide in my apartment and not see anyone and avoid the matter entirely. Occasionally I travel to my home province where I can relax peacefully with my mother, knitting and watching TV movies and not celebrating Christmas at all in her company. Other years I have spent Christmas day with a friend, making crepes and watching TV.

I have nothing against Christmas; I just have nothing for it either.

This year is my first year experiencing the Christmas season in a large organization, and I’m feeling unprepared for it. This is a part of corporate work culture that I’ve really had no experience with, and for the first time in a long time, all this Christmas stuff is making me feel uncomfortable. I don’t recall ever feeling like this before. How do I navigate my work relationships without seeming like a Grinch or a Scrooge?

I am asking: what do you do?

Naomi House

Naomi House, MLIS, is the founder and publisher of the popular webzine and jobs list (formerly I Need a Library Job) and former CMO (Chief Marketing Officer) of, a crowdfunding platform focused on African patrimony, heritage and cultural projects. INALJ was founded in October 2010 with the assistance of her fellow Rutgers classmate, Elizabeth Leonard. Its social media presence has grown to include Facebook (retired in 2016), Twitter and a LinkedIn group, in addition to the interviews, articles and jobs found on INALJ. INALJ has had over 21 Million page hits and helped many, many thousands of librarians find employment! Through grassroots marketing, word of mouth and a real focus on exploring unconventional resources for job leads, INALJ grew from a subscription base of 20 friends to a website with over 500,000 visits in one month. Naomi believes that well-sourced quantity is quality in this narrow job market and INALJ reflects this with many new jobs published daily. She has also written for the 2011, 2012 and 2013 LexisNexis Government Info Pro and many other publications in the past decade. She presents whenever she can, including serving on three panels at the American Library Association's Annual Conference in Las Vegas; as breakout presenter at OCLC EMEA in Cape Town, South Africa; as a keynote speaker at the Virginia Library Association annual meeting; at the National Press Club in Washington DC; McGill University in Montreal, Canada; the University of the Emirates, Dubai, MLIS program and the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Naomi was a Reference, Marketing and Acquisitions Librarian for a contractor at a federal library outside Washington, DC, and has been living and working in Budapest, Hungary and Western New York State. She spent years running her husband’s moving labor website, fixed and sold old houses and assisted her husband cooking delicious Pakistani food. She is preparing to re-enter the workforce and is job hunting. Her husband is now the co-editor of INALJ, a true support!  She has heard of spare time but hasn’t encountered it lately. She pronounces INALJ as eye-na-elle-jay. 


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