2016 has been a rough year. Our nation’s political landscape is reminiscent of a WrestleMania event, celebrities are dropping like flies, Clemson might be on its way to a second-straight national championship game and the only binding force keeping our country from breaking apart from the inside is the celebration of a dead gorilla.
After a year of working two jobs on top of school and having exhausting conversations about politics with people who (myself included) really have no clue what they are talking about half the time, all I want to do is go through November with thoughts of deeply unhealthy and fattening food. I want my head to be filled with plate upon plate of turkey, stuffing, deviled eggs, ham, macaroni and cheese and other various assortments of artery-clogging goodness. Halloween is done, and now it’s time for my favorite holiday — Thanksgiving.
Or at least I thought it was.
If you were to judge it by the houses I pass on my way to work or the posts that my friends have made on Facebook immediately after Halloween, you would never know that Thanksgiving was a mere three weeks away. Before some even had time to take down their plastic ghosts and witches or carved pumpkins, many were already pulling out tangles of lights — half of which probably don’t work — bent-up fake trees that should have been replaced six years ago and some stockings that their mom made for good measure.
It isn’t just the average person trying to give Thanksgiving the cold shoulder; it’s businesses, too. Every year, sometimes as early as the first week of November, many department stores have advertisements about Christmas, Christmas trees, Christmas decorations and sometimes even one of those gigantic, in-your-face blow-up Santas that stare you down with those condescending eyes. He stares because he knows he has won. It’s Christmas time, whether you like it or not.
You know what, Santa? No. This scrooge refuses to go gently into that silent night. We don’t have anywhere near enough different Christmas songs to account for two full months of this. And no, pop artists covering 30+-year-old songs does not count as different.
I will stand up for Thanksgiving. I will stand against you, dear reader, who has seen the movie “Elf” enough times to recite lines from it in half of your November and December social encounters. And you, who skips out on a second plate in order to get a better place in line to save $20 on a TV for Black Friday that you probably could have gotten for the same price online. I will wave the banner of selfish gluttony and, though I might feel bad about it afterward, in both body and mind, I will enjoy every bite of my mom’s sweet potatoes and my grandpa’s ham. Only afterward will I let myself get into the Christmas spirit.
But honestly, when it really comes down to it, I don’t really care that much what you do. If singing "Let It Snow" out in the 80-degree South Carolina sun makes you happy, then more power to you. I will be (partially) joining you in a month, when I personally believe it is time for it. In the meantime, enjoy this fall and enjoy the time with your family over Thanksgiving. Everyone in this country has been so angry for so long, and I don’t see that getting too much better on the 8th, so we could all do for some giving of thanks and the type of bonding that comes from good food.
So if you are a compulsive Christmas enthusiast, I will try to learn to coexist with you, though I urge you to not look past this wonderful holiday. At least find a better Christmas song to play on repeat than "Last Christmas." You obviously thought that the person you gave your heart to last Christmas was special, so why should we trust your judgment this year?