|Santa's grotto in Asda. In August. (pic from guardian.co.uk)|
However, what I do not love is how ridiculously early consumerist society has started the Christmas season. It really does begin earlier every year. And I may have to get really angry. This is quite rare, I should warn you.
I understand that for some strange reason supermarkets start selling Advent calendars months in advance of when they will first be used, and that Christmas party guides need to be out in plenty of time, but the rest has just gone too far. Asda opened Santa's Grottos in their stores up and down the nation in August. Yes, August. Back when we were all tanning it up on holiday, waltzing around in skimpy sun dresses, eating ice creams. By all means, shops can awaken a little festive anticipation inside the nation around now by selling us Fairisle knits and spiced cookies, but why is it necessary to be outrightly so Christmassy so far in advance?
This weekend I went out into the city centre, and I was genuinely shocked and angered by what I saw. Obviously, the chain establishments are the worst - the shop windows in Next, for example, depicted a beautiful scene, full of Christmas trees and twinkly lights. It was lovely. BUT TOO EARLY. Caffe Nero was decorated to the extreme with fir garlands and wreaths, laden with Christmas lights and baubles. M&S have already got their "Magic & Sparkle" carrier bags out. IT'S OCTOBER! For goodness' sake, there's Hallowe'en and Bonfire Night first! At least Wilko's had Hallowe'en themed window displays.
And my real issue is that all this will ruin actual Christmas. When December arrives, it will not feel in the slightest bit special if we've been surrounded by Christmas trees for months, and no-one will have as much Christmas spirit as they should. This displeases me greatly. If I hear Mariah Carey's "All I Want For Christmas" playing before at least halfway through November, I may flip.
People may wonder why this is my stance if I love Christmas so much, but it is precisely because I love Christmas so much that I hate how early the build up begins. I want the last month before Christmas to be super special and festive and it just won't be at this rate. Last year, a friend described me as "infused with Christmas", which is probably about right to be honest. But I refuse to let my Christmas-addict-mania out until at least 25th November. There will be no decorating, listening to Christmas songs, or carol singing. Well, I'll try anyway. Hopefully the beast that is consumerism won't get to me, and I hope you can resist it too.