Archive | 4:50 am

I Hate Cold Turkey

29 Dec

It’s hard enough to get into the holiday spirit when you’re in Florida, seeing as the weather is so nice and the neighborhood where my parents live is (by edict of the community’s bylaws) decoration- and light-free. Of course, it also doesn’t help that my parents aren’t into the Christmas spirit like I am, that we keep to ourselves on the big day, and that we barely listen to the radio. So it’s easy to forget that Christmas was only three days ago; it seems like so much longer, if it ever was Christmas. Hell, it barely even feels like Hanukkah, and tonight is only night four (of eight, if you didn’t know). How is it possible that this year, more than any other year I can remember, it seems as if the holiday season came and went quicker than ever? Wasn’t it supposed to be, like, the year of the Super Holiday, what with all three of the major ones happening this last week of December?

To wit: my folks and I ventured off to Sawgrass Mills this evening. If you’ve never heard of Sawgrass Mills, let me describe it simply as the largest outlet mall in the world (or so I’ve been told). End to end, the place must be two miles long, or longer. That’s a lot of stores. Unfortunately, however, less than a week after Christmas, that also meant a lot of stores that were practically empty or in total disarray. It wasn’t even worth walking into the Gap Outlet, and J. Crew was a total bust. My mother said Chico’s was the same. Who could find anything in Ralph Lauren — the place was a mess. I even dashed into the Books-a-Million store to grab a copy of Doug’s book (which hit stores this week), but it seems the copies they had in stock (and I asked) were all gone (already!). Even the take-a-picture-with-Santa booth was already being dismantled. It was as if the entirety of Sawgrass had joined together to confirm that yes, Virginia, there was a Christmas — but now it’s over, thank you very much. Please move on and excuse us while we clean up.

I know some people would rather the holiday season end before it even begins. Many of those same people are probably overjoyed that things have ended so quickly. But I genuinely do enjoy holiday time, and all kidding aside, I wish it was longer. There’s really no other time during the year when people are as happy as they are during the month of December. Think about it — temperatures are falling, days are getting shorter, things are coming to a close (at least calendar-wise), there’s stress from family, stress from work … need I go on? And yet, the music, the lights, the decorations, heck, I submit that even the gift-giving (and receiving) puts people in a happier mood.

So I’m not sure why people and stores are so quick to let it all go. All that build-up, all that hype, and then pffft — just like that, the music stops, the sales get changed from “After Christmas” to “End of Season,” and people become a lot less jolly. It makes New Year’s Eve such an anti-climactic and forced “holiday.” And what do we who live in the northeast have to look forward to after New Year’s? Snow, cold, less daylight, more snow, and more cold … for three more months (at least). Whoop-dee-doo. In Florida, tourism goes down after the holidays. Is that really worth rushing into to? Is that really any better than Christmas?

So I suggest extending the holiday season. After all, Hanukkah is eight days long, and aren’t there supposed to be 12 days of Christmas? Yeah, I know: the decorations have been up since right after Halloween and you’ve heard Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You” a few too many times. So what? Weren’t you happier during the past month than you are now? As far as I’m concerned, there really is no good reason to go cold turkey on the holidays. With so little to look forward to until Spring arrives, maybe an extension of the season wouldn’t be so bad. Who’s with me on this one?