Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year, and Humbug.

I couldn't find any humbugs again this year. Jesmona Black Bullets are close enough.

Happy New Year to my few readers, and may it be an improvement on last year. If you're in the UK at least, that shouldn't be difficult.

Tonight I will be mostly avoiding the revelries. I'm in Scotland where the drinkers won't have to be back at work until Tuesday so it'll be mayhem here. The whole country is closed until then.

There was a time when January Sales would have started on the first Monday in January. Now they are called Boxing Day Sales and they start before Christmas. In my younger days, everything closed - absolutely everything - for Christmas day, Boxing day and New Year's day. Every other day was just a normal day. Decorations went up a couple of weeks before Christmas and came down a couple of weeks after.

Now the festivities start before Halloween, shops are covered with tinsel and glitter from November onwards, January sales start before Christmas and today - the final straw - I read that supermarkets have just started stocking Easter eggs.

We seem to be caught in an accelerating loop of consumerism. There is no way I will buy an Easter egg in January because it will be past its expiry date by Easter. I have noted, in previous years, mince pies on sale for Christmas but which expired in November. The trappings of each festivity are now sold so far in advance that they are unusable by the time the actual festivity arrives. It's insane.

Soon, children will open Easter eggs on Christmas morning and take presents from under the tree at Halloween. They will go out trick-or-treating in the summer and families will take their holidays in April.

Eventually it will all make its way back round to the proper time of year for each event.

Or maybe it'll just become one continuous lunatic frenzy of celebration until the whole lot collapses under its own acceleration. If that happens, perhaps we'll be able to get back to normal, with the right event at the right time of year and none of this shut-down for weeks at a time when nobody can get anything done and nobody knows which festivity they are currently buying for.

I don't even know when to exclaim 'Humbug' any more!


Just Peachie said...

It is all completely out of hand! says the woman who just got her Christmas decorations down an stored up in the attic a mere few moments ago. Kudos to me though. This year I bought no new decorations and I took packed up three large sacks of old decorations to give to the rummage folks and another two bags to give to the garbage men.

The older I get the lighter i seem to want to live. Happy unencumbered New Year!

Romulus Crowe said...

I admit I take little interest in decorations for Christmas. You're right though. We seem to spend the early years accumulating tons of stuff and the rest of our lives trying to get rid of it all.

There are boxes in my attic that haven't been opened for at least ten years. I have no idea what's in them.

I could even wrap them as surprise presents to myself next Christmas. It's bound to be something I want because I must have bought it once!

Just Peachie said...

"I could even wrap them as surprise presents to myself next Christmas. It's bound to be something I want because I must have bought it once!"


tom sheepandgoats said...

This problem of ever more premature shopping celebrations will fix itself. No need to worry. At the present rate, within 9 years, early holiday shopping and decoration sprees will have backed up enough to coincide with the actual holiday or the current year! At that point, if someone has the foresight to jam on the brakes, the universe will once again be in harmony.

(good to hear from you, Romulus. Alas, your comment provoked a harsh response from one of "those atheists." I did my best to defend you.)

Romulus Crowe said...

Hi Tom. I said a little more over there but well, if someone's looking for offence, they'll find it.

There's a lot of that sort of thing around these days, unfortunately.

Southern Writer said...

The January sales here used to be called White Sales. It was when linens, towels, and oddly enough, mattresses could be gotten for a fair price.

I didn't decorate for Christmas again this year. Technically, I have paid holidays for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years--if you count getting off work around four or five a.m. on those days "a holiday."

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