The Harbinger Online

Hijacked Holiday

It’s not December. It’s November. It’s not even Thanksgiving. And yet Christmas preparation starts the day after Halloween. ABC Family is already advertising their “25 Days of Christmas”,

department stores have already arranged their holiday displays and 94.1 KFKF is already announcing their switch to Christmas music after Thanksgiving.

DSC_3306Don’t get me wrong, I love Christmas. I love my family’s Christmas Eve

tradition of picking out ornaments at Halls followed by dinner at

PF Changs, I love singing with the Kansas City Symphony at their Christmas performances every year with my choir, but most of madpics1all I love that special feeling you get during the holidays that you don’t get any other time of year. It’s the anticipation leading up to Christmas that makes the holiday.

What I don’t love about Christmas is that the season starts too early. Christmas comes around once a year. It’s almost like Thanksgiving doesn’t get a day anymore. Christmas preparation starts at the beginning of November, overshadowing the one day a year where you can eat multiple helpings of mashed potatoes and no one bats an eye. When people prepare in October and the start of November it takes away that warm, fuzzy Christmas feeling you get from the Christmas trees, cold weather and the Plaza lights.

Decorations are one of my favorite parts of the holiday season. Driving down Mission Road in December and seeing the multicolored lights on the Village shops, driving on themed streets like Candy Cane Lane and even that house with the thousands of tacky lights and random decorations off 95th and Mission Road are all things I look forward to during the winter. But if you want to decorate for Christmas before Thanksgiving, draw a turkey.

Another big part of the early Christmas season comes from commercialization. Every year Christmas commercialization starts earlier and earlier encouraging you to buy, buy, buy. I think this puts a sort of pressure on Christmas. It has become about making a profit for businesses instead of the joy of giving and spending time with family. Many people have money constraints and constantly seeing extravagant toys they could buy for their children most likely does not help. It can also build unrealistic ideals for children and high expectations that are are unattainable for their parents. For me, this ruins the holiday spirit. It is supposed to be about giving whatever you can rather than what you can buy.

Commercialization also puts a rush on the holiday. Continually seeing commercials and advertisements for Christmas makes me feel like I’m late. By mid November, after seeing advertisements since October, I feel a pressure to get on with preparation. Whether it’s buying gifts for my family, decorating, or preparing for the holiday in general.

Christmas is only one day, yet we are constantly bombarded with advertisements leading up to the fact. It has turned into a three month ordeal. In order to keep the special feeling of Christmas alive people need to stop anticipating the arrival of the holiday up to almost three months early, whether it be with decorations or preparation. Christmas will come soon enough, and the days and hours of anticipation will only ruin the specialness of the holiday. It normalizes the season and that is not what the holiday is about.

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Madison Hyatt

Senior Maddie Hyatt is the online head copy editor for the Harbinger. Read Full »

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