Just Let People Enjoy Christmas Early
We all know that one person who won't...
Every year, I crawl up to the doorstep of the holiday season looking like someone who has just been attacked by some kind of large jungle cat. Some of this is just the way the end of the year works, with people rushing towards the same Q4 deadlines at the same time and then attempting to pack five weeks of relaxation into the same five short grayish-white days. But some of it, at this point, is very clearly me. I need to do a bunch of holiday shopping, and I also want to hibernate, and I simply cannot work it out in such a way that any of this happens normally. This is not an excuse, really, but more of an explanation for why I seem categorically unable to remember anything to buy for Secret Santa or why I impulse-purchased a $200 Ralph Lauren flannel while getting a $150 Hugo Boss polo shirt for my girlfriend’s brother-in-law as his Christmas gift. It’s not me, it’s these damn circumstances.
Thankfully, my failing puma-shredded brain is backstopped by my girlfriend, who is largely devoted to celebrating any holiday as early as possible and is utterly maniacal about making sure every inch of our apartment is optimized for Christmas cheer. The process of getting our living room
cluttered adorned with lights and stockings and fake candles and wreaths and mistletoe and a mini pine tree and various ornaments has narrowed over time even if the duration of these decorations has expanded. About two weeks before Halloween—while our living room mirror had paper bats taped on it and our bookshelves were strewn with cotton spider webs and orange lights and skeleton animals lurked behind our window curtains—she turned to me and asked to pick out a stocking for our beagle. All this frantic redressing of holiday obligations seems secondary to how thoroughly mushed my brain is at this time of the year and it is especially distant to the oddly gratifying process of getting our place Christmas-ready in late October.
Even as this process has given me a sort of dazed appreciation for celebrating holidays whenever the fuck I feel like, my internal monologue devolved into me haphazardly remembering some guys who get equally steamed and tenacious about people celebrating Christmas before Thanksgiving. These people are the Calendar Police, and they coalesce into a hardened crew of perverted sticklers who absolutely do not have time for weenies or layabouts or smug shirking types who passively accept the early churn from Halloween into the holiday season. There are many ways their desultory fuming derangements spiral further out into abstraction: They find themselves walking into a Rite Aid and descending into some Cornholio-style rant about Reese’s cups shaped like Christmas trees, or the more tragicomic ones opt for overbaked soliloquies about Starbucks holiday cups in early-November.
Put up a tree in August, nothing matters. As a Christmas Eve baby—and perhaps Jesus’s forgotten cousin—my natural distaste for corny festive cheer overshadowing my birthday does not blind me to the fact that Christmas is a magical holiday for the overtly sentimental types. Thanksgiving is my preference, but raging against the Santa Industrial Complex is a steep, even if shockingly possible gambit. Turkey Day is also largely about day drinking and watching rich people parade their dogs around on television. And it’s not as if Michael Buble has recorded any Thanksgiving album called something like Michael Buble Presents: Awkward Silence at the Adult Table with the hit single, “Biting Your Tongue While Your Uncle Says Something About Immigration.” In a world full of terrors, if a Christmas hardo wants to pop on Elf in November, by all means, enjoy your God-given American freedom; meanwhile, I’ll be enjoying some soggy bread I just shoved up a turkey’s ass.