Greetings, my fellow port swillers!
I don’t know why, since they do it every year, but ol’ Robbo was surprised and shocked this morning at hearing the first bits of Christmas musick being played on the local classickal station.
Indeed, my exact words were, “Oh, no, no, no, no, no, no!!”
As I say, it’s the same pattern: They start by doing a little “Christmas” fill-in at the top or bottom of the hour the Monday after Thanksgiving. Gradually, they add more and more such musick to the playlist. By the week of Christmas itself, the stuff is wall-to-wall and one is heartily, thoroughly, totally sick of it.
And on December 26? Zilch. Nothing. Nada. Back to regular programming as if nothing had ever happened.
As I grow older and crankier, I resist this whole biznay more and more. As of yesterday, it’s Advent, dammit, ADVENT! (Happy Liturgical New Year, by the way!) Christmas does not start until the evening of December 24th. Furthermore, it doesn’t end until January 6 (or February 2, if you really want to kick it).
As a matter of fact, Advent is one of my favorite seasons of the year, combining as it does a certain Lent-like repentance with an excitement over the impending arrival on earth of our Lord. Thus, yesterday ol’ Robbo duly put up wreaths on the front doors of Port Swiller Manor swathed in purple ribbon and also built an appropriate Advent table wreath.
Sigh. I know, I know. The whole modern “Christmas Season” is just a secular, commercial-driven co-opting of the Christian tradition (well, at least of its more surface-y traits). And every year, it’s more about the co-opting and less about the tradition. (See, for example, the gradual displacement of the greeting “Merry Christmas!” with the much more anodyne and meaningless “Happy Holidays!” Try the former at work and you’ll find yourself hauled up in front of HR for hate speech.)
Need I point out that Scrooge did have at least something of a point? Bah, humbug!
The good news is that the Gels get this as well. Indeed, Eldest has taken to spending the period between Thanksgiving and the Real Christmas saying to everyone, “Merry Xmas!”