As October exits stage left and November peaks from around the curtain, retailers are buzzing behind the set preparing their attack. If they play their cards right, all they really have to do is hit you with a barrage of reminders that what the holidays are all about is... giving!
And eating, drinking, and celebrating. But mostly it's about "giving" - a word that translates to the English word "buying" which is synonymous with "profits".
If you're an adult American, you don't need much reminding as you've already had it drilled into you a thousand times before. There are snowman-shaped butter cookies to bake, worthless trinkets to buy, baby trees to chop down, and weight to gain.
Pull your checkbook out and stick it in its holster so the depletion of your savings account can go that much more smoothly. Safety off! Pen cocked! All hail the red, white and green. Getcher wrapping paper, tape, ribbon, gift bags, and brightly colored tissue paper here. Getcher Lamborghini branded Christmas tree baubles, glass blown angels, and New York Jets Christmas Tree Skirts here.
There are toys made in China to be assembled according to impossible instructions cheerfully written in a cockeyed language I call "Vague Diagram." There are work functions to suffer, glad handing to be done, backs to scratch, and awkward and utterly forgettable memories to be created.
There are pictures to be taken, shared, ordered, posted, printed, and put away in a box forever. There are iTunes gift cards to buy, or Barnes & Noble gift cards, and/or Ross Dress For Less gift cards. Nothing says, "I don't know you anymore," like a gift card. Except maybe one of those small blue blankets swiped from an airplane - which sort of subtly adds, "...and I probably never did."
There are rooftops to be climbed, colored lights to be hung, and big plastic reindeer displays to be placed by the chimney with care. And let's not forget the actual event. The four hour family inadequacy session masquerading as a Christian and/or Jewish holiday that this is all about.
There are expectations to not live up to. Harmless compliments to misinterpret as vicious criticism. Prayers to mouth, grace to mumble, and hymns to hum. And don't forget to thank Jesus for this wonderful bounty of Q4 earnings. Praise the lord. Take a moment to absorb it all because it goes so darn fast.
There are hangovers to endure...for the love of Christ. There is wrapping paper to burn, boxes to recycle, and returns to make for something a little less, er, tight around the buttocks. Amen to that. There are resolutions to make, gym memberships to buy, and resolutions to break.
Can I get a hallelujah?
Come on, get in the spirit, people!
Let's get to it!