My six year old loves sweets, adores them. If I’d let him he would spend all his pocket money one them. When he gets sweets, he eats two or three, gives one to each of us and then takes them up to his room and eats one, maybe two a day, until they are gone. That’s what I’m like with Christmas. I’m not an ‘early’. Each year the same group of people rally round on Twitter to shake our heads at the Christmas trees all decked on December 1st, or even November this year. I like to think it’s fairly lighthearted, but I know that we do all find it annoying and I know that because of that we get labelled as ‘humbugs’. I’ve been trying to pinpoint why it bothers me, as really, many people think we should just keep our opinions to ourselves and let Christmas rein, unchecked, from the end of November.
Firstly we are told that it shouldn’t matter to us. Why should we care if you have your tree up early? Unfortunately, in these days of social media, I care because your early Christmas madness is IN MY FACE, because the first thing we all do is share pictures of our festive decorating. Actually, it’s the second thing we do, the first is rearrange all the tree decorations after the children have finished. Unfollow, I hear you cry, but you see I don’t know to unfollow until I see your picture and then it’s too late, I can’t unsee it. Besides, I may otherwise think your feed is pretty and interesting, so I want to stick around.
Secondly, let me tackle the Bah humbug/but I really love Christmas argument. This seems to be the most common reason for turning Christmas up to eleven, right from the start. Not putting my decorations up on the 1st doesn’t make me grumpy, a Scrooge, mean to my children or a Christmas hater. I love Christmas. Love it. All the traditions, the old ones and some we’ve made our own, the food, the carols, the gifts, the cosy after Christmas bit. I love it all. The fact that someone puts their tree up early doesn’t mean they love it more, it means they love it earlier and by levelling the “bah humbug” accusation at those of us who like to wait, you are being just as judgemental as I am. Most of the ‘earlies’ seem to take their tree down on Boxing Day, so really they don’t love Christmas, they love pre-Christmas.
All of that is pretty trivial though and I agree, live a let live. Stop judging and move on. However, I can’t help feeling this is part of a bigger, more invasive problem with the festive season, which I think is pretty damaging to all of us.