Finished With Christmas
By H.G. Miller
So, this is the year I finally start to hate Christmas.
I don’t want to hate Christmas. Really. It’s always been one of my favorite holidays. Thanksgiving used to be my favorite, because you had all of the food and family and general harmony, plus there wasn’t a whole lot of religious baggage.
Now that I live 2,000 miles away from the people I care about most, Christmas has taken over the Thanksgiving vibe, because it’s easier to go home at the end of the year.
I’m pretty sure I’m not the only person who fails to see a whole lot of Jesus in Christmas anymore, and that’s all right with me. I’d rather focus on the family gatherings and general idea of a “holiday” season where we all count our blessings and try to be a little nicer to each other.
Alas, that is all about to end, and I’m just going to start hating Christmas.
For my family, the Christmas season always started at Thanksgiving. After stuffing ourselves silly, we would then decorate the house with a plethora of green and red decorations and fake snow and our giant tree.
Then, I started working retail in college, and Halloween became the new start of the season. You see, for a few dollars more, you could work an overnight shift on Halloween and help put up the Christmas section of the store in place of the Halloween section.
Of course, there were always a few weeks after that before the entire range of tree and light displays were completed, so that a few weeks before Thanksgiving, you were actually thinking of Christmas.
This unsettled me a bit, and I started to develop an ill will to the commercialization of my second favorite holiday. Over my years in retail, various displays started to creep in before the Halloween overhaul – a pack of icicle lights here, some stuffed bears over there – and the distaste grew.
And now… well, let me just say that I don’t hate Christmas yet. I just know it’s coming.
You see, I went shopping yesterday, and at the grocery store, they were playing Christmas music, the checkers were all wearing Santa hats, and when I got to the register, I was greeted with a “Merry Christmas.”
“What?” I asked.
“Merry Christmas,” the cashier repeated in broken English, a smile bright on her face.
“It’s October 2nd,” I told her.
She stared blankly at me. “Si?”
Yes, it is the second day of October, nearly three full months before the date a bunch of people agreed would be Jesus’ birthday hundreds of years ago, and my local grocery store has decided to begin milking the good will now.
Look, I’m a reasonable guy, but 85 days of peace, love and happiness is too much for any sane man to take. Red and green cookies shouldn’t be on sale already. I shouldn’t be thinking about how to decorate
my little tree
before I’ve figured out how I’m going to fit my favorite felt hat into this year’s Halloween costume.
It’s October Fucking Second, and they’re playing “chestnuts roasting over an open fire” while it’s 85 degrees and sunny outside and people are still planning trips to the beach before the fall weather sets in!
So, like I said, this is probably going to be the year I start hating Christmas.
Bring on Labor Day, you greedy corporate bastards.