How Early is Too Early?

<This isn’t quite writing-themed, but it’s been playing on my mind>

So Starbucks have the red cups out… there is a wreath on the door of the one in town. Christmas songs are being played on the radio, and everyone is wittering on about going Christmas shopping. In the middle of the shopping centre there is a giant Santa’s Grotto, fabulously overpriced, and some miserable-looking people dressed as elves.

I’m a moody old cow when it comes to Christmas as a rule. I don’t mind the wrapping-the-presents bit, and I don’t mind the day itself (as a rule). What I do object to is it starting in September. I hate Christmas songs – even on Christmas day (and especially Wham!) and I hate the mania that seems to grab people into converging on the nearest shopping centre and panic-buying.

So no, you will not catch me wearing antlers or a glowing nose, wishing strangers a “merry Christmas” or even donning a red hat. You will catch me with a Starbucks red cup, purely because I have no choice, and you will catch me watching Christmassy films (purely because they are the only guilty pleasure I get out of the whole thing).

But, how early is too early? Is it okay to start thinking about Christmas before Halloween, or buying next year’s presents in the January sales because you simply can’t wait? The bookshops are filled with Christmas books – celebrities have written their biographies, and Special Editions take front and centre. Little Christmas-stocking books are garbed in fake snow and red baubles on shelves to make sure you know they’re just for Christmas, and all the signs have snowflakes on them. This year, Carol Ann Duffy has released a book of poems just for Christmas.

When I worked in retail, I loathed the Christmas thing. It was probably the fact that you spend hours decorating the place, just to have it destroyed in a matter of minutes by panicked shoppers who don’t know what to buy Gran. (I do like the well-wishing regulars I used to get who would bring me chocolate every now and then to cheer me up). I was always amused by the harangued husbands on Christmas Eve picking up something bound in pink for their wives because they didn’t get organised sooner.

But I do love bits of Christmas. What makes you feel Christmassy? And are you even thinking of it yet?

And also, what book would you recommend for holiday reading? Would it be one from the Christmas-themed displays, or a classic? Would it just simply be your favourite book, because you should always feel happy at Christmas, or should it be a brand new, untried one?

<There, I made it a bit book-themed!>

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3 Comments

Filed under Christmas

3 responses to “How Early is Too Early?

  1. We are on the same page, my friend. If you visit http://www.letusbefrank.wordpress.com, you will see why. Take care and “Merry Christmas” ! πŸ˜‰

  2. Nothing involving Christmas should take place before Thanksgiving. I don’t want to hear any Christmas carols either (and if I have to listen to them I prefer that it be the Trans-Siberian Orchestra). I readily admit that I don’t like much about Christmas, but I really hate hearing carols in late October.

  3. I bloody LOVE Christmas! I love Christmas films and songs and buying presents for my friends and family. I love the sales and snuggling up with my boyfriend and puppy on the sofa when it’s cold and dark outside and the only light is from our Christmas lights. Love it! I love seeing how excited people are when they’re opening presents and, of course, I love opening my presents. I love Christmas dinner and lame TV show Christmas specials and everybody being happy and jolly and together.
    That said, I don’t tend to get Christmassy until the end of November. From about now onwards I’m cool with it but Christmas stuff in shops in September and October is ridiculous. I’ve bought a lot of my presents already but that’s mostly because I save up throughout the year and buy things as I see them that friends/family will like.
    Anyway, big long comment but I love a bit of Christmas cheer πŸ™‚ x

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