I Think I’m Going To Be Stuffed
TODAY IS THE LAST WORKING DAY IN OCTOBER. November starts tomorrow and that means it is Unofficially the Official start of the Holiday Season.
It always seemed to me that Thanksgiving used to be the kickoff for all of the holiday madness, but over time, and with aggressive retail marketing, everything has pushed up so far that ads for Christmas toys and such are now rubbing shoulders with the Fourth of July.
It won’t be long before the ads will proclaim that we have, “Only 365 Shopping Days until Christmas.” Santa will have to trade in his furry suit for Hawaiian shirts and cutoffs.
Oh, my God! He’ll start to look like me!
What first brought this to my attention was the day I walked into our local Hobby Lobby store and saw that they had Christmas tree ornaments on sale – in August.
Something like that has got to induce some kind of “temporal displacement” in store employees. Outside its August, but inside its December. I know that it turns me around a bit.
Thanksgiving will be here in a few weeks and with that the gloves come off and things get rough. Santa Claus will make his auspicious entrance in the Macy’s parade in New York and mailboxes will be stuffed like the turkey, only with catalogues offering everything at bargain prices. They fill up our recycling bin in just a few days. It’s a short trip from being a tree in the North Woods to being fodder for recycling into Bud Light Beer coasters and Charmin.
For a short time while I was in college I got a holiday job working in a large department store. They stuck me in the Toy Department and if there is one thing that will sour your outlook on the holidays, that’s it. I was shocked by how surly people got while shopping for toys – and how many of them tried to shoplift stuff. But that’s another story.
As the holiday furor starts to build I will try to insulate myself from it. Any gift shopping I want to do I will do online. I can save some money doing that and, more importantly, I can avoid having to plow through the crowds.
I haven’t been to “The Mall” in years. It’s like joining an Ant Farm with a Food Court and a Victoria’s Secret. Half the people there are just loitering, looking for either a slice of cheap pizza or someone to share it with. The other half are people like me – get in, find something that can qualify as a gift, and get out ASAP – and hope nobody stole the car while you were in there.
Every year it’s pretty much the same routine, only the prices go up and the toys get more complicated. It used to be Cabbage Patch Dolls, now its Drones.
The Holiday Season is here whether we like it or not, a little earlier every year. The TV is stuffed with ads for things I wouldn’t ever buy. The newspapers are the same only quieter. The mailbox is stuffed with catalogues. The Mall is stuffed with shoppers.
By 6 PM on Thanksgiving Day I will probably be stuffed as well, drowsy from all the food, asleep in The Rip Van Winkle Memorial Chair and sounding like one of those drones.
Thing is, shopping the stores is traditional when closing in on “Santa Claus Day”, for many anyway. Not everyone, but a lot of people. No…..not me…..I do it like you do, well mostly…..online. But I think about the times my Wife and I did the in-store thing, shopping for four young kids. It was tiresome, and I remember wishing I was home watching Jimmy Stewart with all his friends in “It’s A Wonder Life”. Of course, now I cherish those Holidays of thePast…..miss them.
The Hallmark channel started Christmas movies a week ago. 😦