How Festivus Works

The Origins of Festivus

Crazy shoppers led to Frank Costanza's creation of Festivus.
Crazy shoppers led to Frank Costanza's creation of Festivus.
Yana Paskova/­Getty Images

­"A Festivus for the Rest of Us"

­ The origins of the Festivus celebration can be dated back to one (fictional) man's refusal to conform to the increased commercialism and consumerism which has saturated the December holiday season. This man's name is Frank Costanza­. During a routine outing to secure a Christmas gift for his son George, events transpired which would forever change the landscape of the holiday season.

In his own words: "Many Christmases ago, I went to buy a doll for my son. I reached for the last one they had -- but so did another man. As I rained blows upon him, I realized there had to be another way! [The doll] was destroyed. But out of that, a new holiday was born. 'A Festivus for the rest of us!'"

From this altercation, Frank Costanza embarked on a quest to create a festival which did not include the material and superficial aspects of most winter holidays. Many people celebrate Festivus on the 23rd day of December, but due to the nonconformist aspect of the holiday, it may be celebrated whenever one so chooses. Let's take a look at the three major elements which make up the Festivus Holiday...