I’d like you to cast your mind back to Christmas’s past. I don’t know about you but I used to get so excited about Christmas I’d be begging my Dad to go and get the Christmas tree for weeks! The first ones would go up in early December. The lights would be just visible through peoples net curtains, the wreaths would be hung on the doors. You couldn’t get your tree too early lest all the needles would fall off before boxing day, the dog would choke on them and it would be a disaster. Every year I’d worry that Santa wouldn’t be able to get in because we lived in a 1940’s terrace house with no chimney but my Mum would assure me he was magic, he had his ways. There would be a mad rush starting on about December 12th as people realised “Bugger! Christmas is soon!” Then for the entirety of January we’d be using Safeways own brand 1 ply toilet roll and couldn’t afford proper Cornflakes because so much had been spent in December on Tracey Islands and novelty singing ties and silly trinket boxes that were too small to actually keep anything in for distant aunties. There would be great excitement when the Coca-cola advert came on, usually during the ad break of Supermarket Sweep or some other quality prime time show at some point in early December. At that moment Christmas had officially started!*
Today is October 23rd 2012. It is not even Halloween yet. This time in 1998 the shops were full of ghosties, plastic vampire fangs, pumpkin carving kits, Scooby-Doo Halloween Special video cassettes and other crap.** Would somebody PLEASE tell me WHY exactly there are Christmas decorations up in certain stores. Mentioning no names NEXT and HOUSE OF FRASER. Would somebody please tell me WHY there are elves in festive jumpers frolicking around my TV screen eating flaming Christmas puddings DFS?!
You are ruining Christmas. I no longer feel a pang of excitement at seeing that first lonesome Christmas tree because it is standing in all its plastic glory in the Oxford Street branch of Next in between the Scandinavian-esque cardigans and faux fur gilets. No more does that first Christmas advert send me in to spasms of joy because it is not even bonfire night yet. Maybe I’m missing something here. I am aware that this is a capitalist society and that companies want to maximise their profits by dragging out their Christmas marketing for as long as possible. I am aware that since the invention of the plastic Christmas tree we are no longer constrained by not wanting to get pine needles in Grannies slippers. However, my point is this – you are ruining the joy of Christmas. I don’t mind the arrival of charity Christmas cards – I’m not a monster. I just don’t want elves on my screen before we’ve even set fire to a effigy of Guy Fawkes. Go away and come back in about a month and a half.
*The Coca-cola advert first being played is still the official start of Christmas.
** There is still Halloween themed crap in shops.