There, now Halloween is officially over – the Pre-Season, if you will. It is time for the professionals to take the field. We are into the Big Time, Serious Holiday Season.
When we move past Halloween and we are down to Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year it becomes time to put away the cutesy costumes and put on the armor.
At least that’s the way a lot of people see it. The time between Halloween and Thanksgiving is Training Camp with “Black Friday” being the kickoff of the game where it is eat or be eaten.
And I will be honest with you – I don’t really understand that. In my mind I think that the Holiday Season is there to be relished as a time to let go of the angst and stress that piles up throughout the year and to embrace that time to be with family and friends – to enjoy each other and to celebrate the reasons why we have these Holidays.
Am I asking too much? Maybe I am, but that doesn’t mean that I can’t try to do it all in the way that I find to be most comfortable and meaningful.
While I see the mobs around me picking up speed I will try to slow down and pass through them at my own pace. Hopefully, I won’t get trampled in the stampede, but I think I’ll be fine. I’ve been practicing my dekes and pivots, or was it my peeks and divots? Well, one of those two things, so I can make those sudden changes of direction like I see on the football field and hockey rink. I can make some pretty shifty moves, but I am a bit concerned about my lack of padding (no fat jokes, please.).
I have been trying to survive going to The Mall and getting home unscathed. So far, so good. Like Shirley Maclaine sang in the movie “Postcards From The Edge,” “I’m Still Here.”
Maybe it is a function of getting older. Maybe not. Maybe it is all about realigning one’s priorities
The Big Parties, the crushing crowds at The Mall, and the frantic looks in the eyes of so many of the people I see around me are just amazing. Been there. Done that. Don’t feel the need to do it anymore.
There are alternate ways of avoiding The Mall and the Super-Mega Stores. The Internet for one. Free shipping makes it more than great, it makes it almost easy. Being retired means that I can hit the Brick and Mortar stores in the off-hours when they are not nearly so crowded. Go into some of those big stores at 2:30 in the afternoon on a Tuesday and the temporary sales clerks look starved for human contact. I provide that, as well as job security along with idle chit-chat while they are bagging my purchases. Of course, if you go into the store at Five O’clock on a Saturday afternoon that same clerk looks like a wounded Grouper treading water while face to face with a hundred hungry Sharks.
The holiday Season can be more than mind-blowing, spirit-busting and joy-leeching, but I’ve decided to not let that happen anymore. That kind of negative stuff is not why we have those days marked in red on the calendar. They are there for Remembrance, Thankfulness, and Hope.
Personally, I think that’s a lot better than Frenzy, Anxiety, and Exhaustion. We already have a day set aside for those feelings: April 15th – Tax Day.