Saturday, November 20, 2010

Backseat To No One

I do not address this next topic lightly. I am aware of how strongly people feel about this but something needs to be said. Someone has got to stand up and say “Hey! Wait your turn.” There must be a champion for the neglected and silently suffering. Who will stand up for the little guy when the world seems all too willing to let it fall by the wayside? As usual it’s me.

I was driving home from work yesterday and flipping through the radio stations when I heard one of my favorite songs. You’d think I would have been thrilled with such a happy coincidence that one of my all time favorites was being played just when I happened on the station, but no. Why you ask? What was the song you ask? O Holy Night.

Good people of this great land hear me. Far too long have I stood idly by while the Christmas season has swept through the calendar like a spilled cup of grape juice on the kitchen counter. Gone are the days when people put up their tree on Christmas Eve. Christmas lights started appearing on houses in November and we said nothing. Department stores donned Christmas decorations while our pantries were still full of Halloween candy and we smiled. Radio stations devoted their slates to Jingle Bell Rock and Holly Jolly Christmas just after Veteran’s Day and we sang along. No more!

I too am complicit in this insurgence in the war of holidays. I live on a street where neighbors revel in holiday cheer. I love their devotion to Christmas and the lights, decorations and music that flood our street at this time of year. A couple of them already have their lights up and a few others are working on it as I type. But I cannot remain silent any longer.

How dare you step on Thanksgiving. HOW DARE YOU!

I know it doesn’t have scores and scores of songs devoted to it. There aren’t bright shiny decorations associated with the season. There aren’t weeks of anticipation leading up to an event so big that its eve is also a holiday and children don’t receive a multi-week break amping up said anticipation. But doesn’t it deserve the same treatment that we give every other holiday? That is, to be left alone un-encroached upon by its neighboring holiday.

What other holiday is treated so poorly?

Thanksgiving is a glorious day of feasts and football, family and gratitude (yes in that order). Close your eyes and imagine with me…no wait, strike that, if you close your eyes you can’t read this anymore.

[I’ll pause and wait for my slower readers to figure that out]

Are we all back? Good then.

Imagine the smell permeating the house; turkey, pie, stuffing, pie, mashed potatoes, pie and rolls, pie… The family is together and the game is on. Heavenly.

This is a day that deserves better and we can give her better. We can give her our full attention; for the love of pie we must give her our full attention.

I too love Christmas and understand the temptation to bust out the wreath and mistletoe just as soon as the mall goes all winter wonderland on us. It takes a good deal of restraint to stave off this premature jubilation and wait.

If you won’t do it for Thanksgivings sake then do it for Christmas sake. Sure the idea of Christmas spirit all year long is great but if it were Christmas all year long then Christmas wouldn’t be special and we’d have just destroyed everything that we look forward to.

I’m not asking that you wait until that blessed day or even that we shove Christmas back to its own calendar month; I’m just asking for one more day. The Friday after Thanksgiving you can just go nuts. Put up a forty foot inflatable Frosty (my neighbor’s got one), go all Griswold on your house, bust out your Blue Ray edition of Polar Express and wear it out, you get the idea. We can do it and we and both holidays will be enriched.


  1. Hear Hear.... Elmo has a movie all about this.... My kids used to love watching it. "Elmo Saves Christmas". Someone made a wish it could be Christmas everyday, and after 6 months of it everyone lost the cheer.... Elmo swooped in and wished it back and all was right with the world again. We are heading that direction. Even my little Seanie (who loves Christmas music mind you) asked me in the car today why the radio was playing Christmas music before Thanksgiving.... He knows in our house we dont start til the weekend after. But good luck with getting that through the minds of soceity and sales reps these days.

    My children keep begging to put up the tree. "But the Cott**'s have theirs up!" ~insert glare in Cotter' mean Cott**'s general direction~

    They've got the Christmas videos stacked in a tidy, anxiously awaited pile, but I won't let them watch them.

    Restraint people! We must show restraint for the good of Christmas!

  3. since when is the early display of lights the anti-thesis to gratitude...
    seems to me the one complaining about the use of lights during the holiday season is contradicting the true meaning of what the lights are intended to represent.
    Maybe try to choose to NOT be offended.


Being Aaron in your inbox? Enter your email address below to sign up.