Every time I hear the phrase, “Christmas in July,” I want to punch someone in the throat. I apologize to all the furniture and mattress salesman for my violent outburst, but it must be said.
If we set aside all of the obvious and significant religious, cultural and historical differences, Christmas and the 4th of July have absolutely nothing in common so I’m not sure why retailers insist on linking the two. With the exception of the freshest corn on the cob and best-looking steaks in the case, there is no buying frenzy on the Fourth. And while “Crazy Louie” at the fireworks stand may strike a resemblance to Santa, I’m pretty sure that his big white beard is mange and that’s a prison jumpsuit. (And you don’t even want to know what’s in that sack.)
It’s not that I don’t love Christmas, I do. A reindeer tattoo on my left ankle almost proved that before I realized that “Blitzen” might be construed as overindulgence on egg nog rather than my affinity for yuletide woodland animals. Nevertheless, I do love Christmastime. I just have a finite fondness that lasts for the month of December and don’t appreciate being reminded of it during the lazy days of summer. The only trees I want to see decorated are with tire swings and fireflies and fruitcake should only refer to cherry pie.
Christmas is also one of the most obligated-laden days of the year. There are so many “have-tos” it’s kind of nice to have a holiday where the only must is watching a parade. No one ever says, “I really must get my Independence Day cards out earlier this year,” because the only reason to ever take an awkward family picture in July is for your passport photo to Barbados.
So while I appreciate the need to stimulate the economy prior to Black Friday, let’s lay off the yuletide references on this Red, White and Blue Monday. Just because I still have my Christmas lights up doesn’t necessarily mean I’m ready to buy a mattress. A ladder and a case of egg nog, perhaps, but not a mattress.
(But now I know what to ask for from Santa this year...)
©2011 Tracey Henry
You can Divamail me those Independence Day cards if you want to....