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Call it "Christmas creep." Holiday decorations are going up earlier in stores with each passing year, seasonal merchandise gets stocked on shelves soon after Halloween, and Christmas-related commercials are appearing on TV long before Santa Claus makes his way through Manhattan in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade.
[url=http://knowledge.wharton.upenn.edu/article.cfm?articleid=1330&CFID=31377... Creep: The Shopping Season Is Longer, but Is It Better?[/url]
[url=http://www.thesantaclausparade.com/]Toronto's Santa Claus Parade[/url]is held toward the middle part of November every year.
The Americans have always started their Christmas season right after their Thanksgiving holiday.
What I hate about Christmas Creep are the Christmas "feel good stories" in the news, or alternatively, the Christmas "tsk tsk what is this world coming to" hard luck stories. They just seem so - I don't know. Why is a single mother with no money to feed her kids and her landlord kicked her out unfairly or whatever, any more tragic at this time of year than any other? And then, of course, that means a rush of good-intentioned charity from people who don't realize that this is reality year-round for people living in poverty, and what they should really do is support housing and stronger labour and minimum wage laws, and increased social assistance and social programs if they really give a damn about any of these people at all. Okay, scrooge rant over.
The Christmas season has started right on schedule, on November 1.
Best Buy has already started their Christmas ads on TV - the same ones they ran last year.
Halloween candy has been whisked off the store shelves to make room for the Christmas candy.
Soon to be followed by letters to the editor about how the true meaning of Christmas has been usurped by commercialism and hedonism, and subsequent letters pointing out that commercialism and hedonism were actually the original spirit of the Saturnalia, which was usurped by Christmas.
I think there's room enough for both, hence my experssion, "Eat, Drink and be Mary".
Rebecca West and I started our Saturnalia shopping yesterday, as a matter of fact. Well, Rebecca West did. I walked away empty handed.
We were in "Green Earth" for a while, and were totally annoyed with the sales person attention we got. It was insane. Couldn't even browse for two minutes without interuption.
We went to Masonville Mall, or as we liked to call it "McMasonville". We separated to shop, and I checked out "Coles" for inexpensive reference books for kids. There were a few. Not many. I passed, knowing I can get books for my grand nephews and Snarfy the Wonder Girl in one fell swoop elsewhere.
I then looked around for the cool toy store that was in the mall last year. It's no longer there.
That's when I got depressed. I found the whole Mall experience depressing, and while I was sitting at the big clock meeting place waiting for Rebecca West, I vowed that this Christmas, while I will avoid the usual last minute panick, (and related expense) I will be shopping at stores that are not located in a mall of any kind.
London has cool stores, they just aren't close together. And when you start early, that's not really an issue.
Christma$$ is about shopping. Shopping in all its wonderful, spectacular, joyful glory. It is the one time of the year when recreational shopping is lifted from daily pastime to Godly purpose. It is the time of the year when the ka-ching of cash registers signifies a self-contribution not to your own renting of climate controlled self-storage, but to another's, who in turn, shall contribute to yours. Christmas is the time when all good men awaken on a day like any other to discover the joy that can only be had through ownership of a gas powered power washer. It is a morning when women can rediscover the joy of electric powered kitchen utensils that once more remind them of their true role in the modern family. It is the one day of every year when children can be indoctrinated into the consumer capitalist culture through the practice of a ritualized orgy of materialism. If nothing else know this and know it well: Christ was a saviour but not a saver! Spend! Spend! Spend!
You forgot gluttony.
Wonderfull, wonderfull gluttony.
Jeez, you guys are such cynics!
Well, although one year has gone by, I [url=http://www.rabble.ca/babble/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=next_topic&f=12&t=001798&...'t changed my mind:[/url]
Originally posted by unionist in honour of Christmas 2007:[b]I hate Christmas - but only the phoney-baloney spiritual part, the hypocrisy of "peace on earth and good will" etc., and the mistaken date of Christ's birth.
It's the commercial part I enjoy. It's good for the economy. [/b]
It's the commercial part I enjoy. It's good for the economy. [/b]
I'm with FM. Combat the meltdown! Buy!
Now, that's the spirit![img]http://i36.tinypic.com/2yv6ibl.jpg[/img]
[ 02 November 2008: Message edited by: M. Spector ]
Originally posted by Michelle:[b]What I hate about Christmas Creep are the Christmas "feel good stories" in the news, or alternatively, the Christmas "tsk tsk what is this world coming to" hard luck stories. They just seem so - I don't know. Why is a single mother with no money to feed her kids and her landlord kicked her out unfairly or whatever, any more tragic at this time of year than any other? And then, of course, that means a rush of good-intentioned charity from people who don't realize that this is reality year-round for people living in poverty, and what they should really do is support housing and stronger labour and minimum wage laws, and increased social assistance and social programs if they really give a damn about any of these people at all. Okay, scrooge rant over.[/b]
I had the same b*tch for years.
At Christmas, some days it's possible to eat 5-10 places for free per day.
Come February and the de-housed and disadvantaged are starving.
We give single moms turkeys, big boxes and toys and think that's a wonderful idea. Smart moms eat for a month out of those boxes.
Now, all these "gifts" come with tags and kids know, it's the Star/whatever box. Kids aren't stupid. The cheque comes out JUST BEFORE CHRISTMAS. Mom goes out, buys a few items--perhaps winter clothes or a toy that the kid has requested. They eat out of the charity box with the turkey for a month. February, the mess catches up and it's a month of pasta with margarine and foodbox granola bars while Mom scrambles to pay rent.
I will Michelle, tell you the one *real* act of charitable giving I ever saw at Christmas.
Now, Sister H, on her own time with her church helpers used to cook up a dynamite meal every Saturday. I mean, the curried goat dinner was better than in any restaurant I've ever eaten. She carried fish dinners for those who didn't eat goat and vegetarian meals. There was enough food in the carton to last 2 days. She secured whole loaves of bread and handed them around.
Most outreach vans, drop-ins and available places for de-housed and poor people to eat are closed on the weekends. She knew this and met the need--often having to bring her grandchildren that she cared for. She never shoveled her religious agenda down anyone's throats like many church groups do.
She often "housed" people, found cash for first/last. She did whatever needed doing or found a way to get it done. Whatever needed fixing, she fixed. No strings attached.
At Christmas she wrote me one year. She had a new project. She knew that Moms in jail did not have any money to buy something for their kids.
She went to the jails and asked the moms, what their kids wanted from Santa. She had them write Christmas cards. When they didn't know she bought teddy bears or other age-appropriate toys.
Her crew wrapped the bears/toys and attached the Christmas cards. There was NOTHING on those toys that identified them as charity. They were "from Mom" only.
THAT my friends, is "the real thing".
[ 02 November 2008: Message edited by: TVParkdale ]
I officially refuse to recognize all things Christmas until AT LEAST December. Even ON Halloween, I went to the local Supermarket to get lights for the pumpkins... They were, the day before, front and central. I was told by 1 employee (in reasonable Kiss Makeup) that he didn't know where, if any, could be found, as they had just moved everything and set up the freaking XMAS AREA!
We're doing Hanukkah this year anyway.