Christmas can wait (a #TBT post)

Photograph taken by Michael Kappel

I had one of the coolest temp jobs ever in college. It was temp in every possible sense of the word, lasting only one night and paying pretty decently for the late 80s/early 90s.

The local mall contracted with the theater department at my college to put up the rather extravagant Christmas decorations. We would show up at the mall as the stores were closing and a mall employee would lead us through a maze of corridors behind the stores to a room that warehoused all the decorations.  A couple of pizzas and several hours later, the center stage area was transformed into a proper Santa wonderland with tall, tall trees and scads of faux snow.

Back then, we didn’t put them up before Halloween. It may not have been the week before Thanksgiving break, but it certainly wasn’t as early as election day. Of course, the commercial Christmas season was shorter back then. This year, I saw Christmas trees in the stores in mid-October when my nephew and I were looking for a new shirt for his high school homecoming. Twitter friends reported hearing Christmas music on the radio as early as Nov. 1.

The increasing length of the consume-athon that has become Advent in America is beginning to turn me from Bob Crachit into Ebenezer Scrooge.

I want to reclaim the wonder of Christmas.

I want Christmas decorations to magically appear in the stores after a proper Thanksgiving in which we have paused to remember all our blessings before we run out asking for more.

I want the Christmas music to start being played on the radio on Black Friday morning.

I want to see sparking lights adorning houses the weekend after Thanksgiving – not competing for space with the mums and carved pumpkins of Halloween.

I can only control so much of my exposure to the trappings of Christmas before the traditional start on Black Friday, but still I try, keeping my favorite scene from my favorite Christmas special firmly in mind.

This Throwback Thursday post originally appeared on a previous blog on November 16, 2010. Posting it before Christmas made it a bit more relevant, but the sentiment remains as we’re only a week into December.

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