Happy Festivus! Here's the Story Behind Fake 'Seinfeld' Holiday (Video)

In case you find tinsel distracting

Frank Costanza had a lot of problems with you people, but that didn’t make him unwilling to share Festivus with the masses.

George’s dad on “Seinfeld” was so fed up with the commercialization of Christmas, he did the only thing a man could — the Queens, New York, native made up his own holiday, replacing the evergreen tree with a sturdy aluminum pole. And a “Festivus for the rest of us” was born, in the words of Jerry Stiller character.

But don’t let us ruin the classic NBC sitcom’s backstory telling for you — watch the video above.

As for the actual origins of the faux holiday, “Seinfeld” scribe Dan O’Keefe has got you covered.

“It is a fake holiday my dad made up in the ’60s to celebrate the anniversary of his first date with my mother, and it was something that we celebrated as a family in a very peculiar way through the ’70s, and then I never spoke of it again,” he told Uproxx in 2015. “I had actually forgotten about it because I had blotted it out of my mind.”

O’Keefe said he never planned to include the family tradition in “Seinfeld” — but that his brother Mark mentioned it to fellow “Seinfeld” writers Jeff Schaffer and Alec Berg, who were also credited on the episode “The Strike” that introduced the holiday to the masses.

“As I recall, they had me meet at Swingers, this diner in Hollywood, and then one of them sat on the other side of me so I couldn’t leave,” O’Keefe told Uproxx. “They asked about Festivus and I said I didn’t really want to talk about it. They said, ‘Well, Mark told us about it,’ and I said, ‘That f—er.’ They said, ‘We think it might be funny in the show,’ and I said, ‘I think it’s a mistake and sort of a family shame.’”

He added, “I swear I thought it was going to be cut out in the edits.”

Thankfully, Frank Costanza’s faux-holiday did make the episode — and the rest is history.

From 'Flip or Flop' to 'Fixer Upper,' 25 HGTV Shows Ranked by Ratings (Photos)

  • Given all the obsession lately with Tarek and Christina El Moussa, you might think “Flip or Flop” is HGTV’s biggest hit. But it isn’t. Here are 25 HGTV shows ranked, from least to most total viewers. 



  • 25. “Listed Sisters”

    Total viewers: 1.041 million


  • 24. “America’s Most Desperate Kitchen”

    Total viewers: 1.058 million


  • 23. “Rehab Addict Detroit”

    Total viewers: 1.319 million


  • 22. “Hawaii Life”

    Total viewers: 1.320 million


  • 21. “Beachfront Bargain Hunt Renovation”

    Total viewers: 1.394 million


  • 20. “Love It or List It”

    Total viewers: 1.479 million


  • 19. “Island Hunters”

    Total viewers: 1.486 million


  • 18. “Tiny House Big Living”

    Total viewers: 1.498 million


  • 17. “Island Life”

    Total viewers: 1.501 million


  • 16. “House Hunters Renovation”

    Total viewers: 1.554 million


  • 15. “Mexico Life”

    Total viewers: 1.578 million


  • 14. “Tiny House Hunters”

    Total viewers: 1.579 million


  • 13. “Good Bones”

    Total viewers: 1.606 million


  • 12. “Lakefront Bargain Hunt”

    Total viewers: 1.686 million


  • 11. “House Hunters: Where Are They Now?”

    Total viewers: 1.689 million


  • 10. “Beachfront Bargain Hunt”

    Total viewers: 1.711 million


  • 9. “Caribbean Life”

    Total viewers: 1.712 million


  • 8. “Property Brothers Buying and Selling”

    Total viewers: 1.733 million


  • 7. “House Hunters International”

    Total viewers: 1.790 million


  • 6. “House Hunters”

    Total viewers: 1.864 million


  • 5. “Property Brothers”

    Total viewers: 2.015 million


  • 4. “Ellen’s Design Challenge”

    Total viewers: 2.230 million


  • 3. “Brother vs. Brother”

    Total viewers: 2.694 million


  • 2. “Flip or Flop”

    Total viewers: 2.869 million


  • 1. “Fixer Upper”

    Total viewers: 4.373 million


  • That was quite a squeaker between “Caribbean Life” and “Beachfront Bargain Hunt,” wasn’t it? That’s all we’ve got for you, folks. But before you go, here’s one last photo of a lifestyle none of us will ever be able to afford.


As you might expect, the “Property Brothers” are all over this thing

Given all the obsession lately with Tarek and Christina El Moussa, you might think “Flip or Flop” is HGTV’s biggest hit. But it isn’t. Here are 25 HGTV shows ranked, from least to most total viewers. 


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