I have come to complain about Christmas creep.
That's the strange effect where one holiday starts before the next one is held.
Already, Christmas decorations are up in the local stores and our local "big box" retailer has its Christmas section up and running. They did that three weeks before Halloween! Next week, they'll probably start putting up their Easter displays.
The Thanksgiving turkey has become road kill these days.
At one time, Roosevelt set the modern date for Thanksgiving to help spur holiday sales. Now it just gets lost in the crush between Halloween and Christmas. And even Halloween is getting run over and starting to play second fiddle to Christmas. Those "Christmas in July" sales some people have may really BE announcing the start of the season.
There are appearances of Santa Claus showing up already in town.
I haven't seen a Johnny Mathis album for sale, yet, but that should happen in the next week or so.
There ought to be a law against this -- the No Christmas Until After Thanksgiving law, or NCUAT (which isn't as clever as some law's names, like the Patriot Act that removes liberties or the Affordable Care Act that isn't).
I believe that all things have their season.
October is for fall harvest festivals, the final farmers' markets and Halloween with children dressing up in costumes and trick or treating door to door.
November is for Thanksgiving, a celebration of family and all that we have to be thankful for during the year.
December is the season of giving, of renewing our faith and of reaching out to others with love, compassion and caring.
If you can survive Black Friday that is. And the big retailers are now pushing even that before Thanksgiving, offering their big pre-Christmas sales on or days before turkey day.
Around my house, Christmas is THE big holiday of the year. My wife loves it. She's been bugging me for weeks to get the Christmas tree up. The coffee table already is covered in sales catalogs.
But I'm an unrepentant traditionalist. The Christmas tree doesn't go up until after Thanksgiving.
And I don't think Christmas shopping should begin any earlier, either. The earlier you start shopping, the more you spend, because once the real Christmas sales begins you won't be able to stop yourself. And like many households in America today, ours needs to be a little less profligate and a little smarter in how (and how much) we spend our money this Christmas.
Each season should have its own season. A full month for Christmas seems enough. Three months seems excessive.
The unrepentant traditionalist in me also insists on calling the season Christmas. I could care less about any politically correct mumbo jumbo. We're not celebrating (after Thanksgiving) "the holidays," we're celebrating Christmas.
All the people who aren't Christians ask me to be tolerant of their views throughout the year. I try. In fact, I strongly approve of tolerating other beliefs. But now it's payback time, when they can be tolerant of my views, which also just happen to represent the vast majority of the country. So let me enjoy Christmas without any PC righteousness.
Right now, as I finish up my Halloween candy, I'm looking forward to enjoying Thanksgiving IN A FEW WEEKS with family and friends and reflecting on all the many things I genuinely have to be grateful for.
And the day after, I'll turn my wife loose and let her remake the house in the Spirit of Christmas (she's a former honorary mayor of Whoville, so you can imagine how carried away she gets). And then I'll spend a full month focusing on trying to help others, making people happy and celebrating the tradition of my Lord's birth.
Because a month from now, it will be the right time and the right season. And that's when I intend to enjoy it (even if Fourth of July stuff will go on sale at Walmart on Dec. 24).
Believe it or not, the seasons aren't all about money. So let's enjoy them, each in their own time, and THEN move on to the next.
This holiday creep is getting ridiculous.
-- Kelly Everitt