I could be accused as such after this post.
I could also be accused as a hypocrite given my outcry is largely based on my annoyance with mass marketing. But let’s separate Sarah the Marketer with Sarah the Consumer. Sarah the Marketer is active from 8-5, five days a week. Sarah the Consumer exists 24/7.
There are four seasons to a year. Spring, Summer, Fall and Christmas. And Fall is quickly losing territory.
We are smack in the middle of the Christmas season despite the actual holiday being 38 days away (at time of this post). Does anyone feel bad for Thanksgiving? It’s a mere meal now. And that meal is only a pre-game tailgate party to stock up on calories needed for shopping the next day. Much like a cyclist loads up on carbs the night before the race.
My issues with all this craziness are as follows:
(note: if you are familiar with the Seinfeld episode introducing Festivus, you can accept this as my “airing of grievances.”)
1) The constant advertising of Christmas which is currently focused on Black Friday. Most stores are trying to lure you out of your warm bed at 4am with super spectacularly ultra-amazing sales. Each company is trying to make their Black Friday specials blacker than the competitor. You see early Black Friday, double Black Friday, super Black Friday, and so black you can’t see your hand in front of your face Black Friday.
2) At least the Postal Service is getting the revenue boost they desperately need. Is anyone else’s mailbox exploding with the extra ads? Granted I only check my mail every couple of days. But I could wallpaper the whole house with what I’ve received so far.
3) Websites are really pushing for the stress induced quick sale. Sites like Ebay have countdown clocks prominently displayed so you always know just how panicked you should be. I expect they’ll get bigger or start flashing the closer we get. If that doesn’t make your gift hunting even more frantic, I don’t know what will. The already stressed shopper could be pushed over the edge and just start adding random junk to their carts. That’s how you end up with things like this…
4) In all forms of advertising you’ll find scare tactics. HURRY! 48 HOURS ONLY! BIG ONE DAY SALE! LAST CHANCE! Pair that with the countdown clock and no wonder women get into fights in department stores. They’re freaked out, lacking sleep, and caught in the belief that that 10% discount will make or break Christmas morning! Want to see the worst I found? Check out Target.com. It looks like Christmas puked all over their website. Inside you’ll find these exact phrases:
don’t wait, quantities limited!
are you ready for Black Friday?
Quick, go get a massage before your brain explodes!
5) If you try to relax by watching a little TV, you’ll only be bombarded with every bad Christmas movie ever made. Many stations will pick 3 Christmas movies, hit the repeat button and leave for vacation. Get ready for 24 hours of…
See there it says “Non-stop fun!”
Well there you go. The Grinch is unleashed. It’s ok, you don’t have to touch me. Even with a 39 and a half foot pole.
On the other hand, I am excited to go to church and celebrate the birth of Christ, spend time with friends in Grand Junction and on the slopes, and watch Christmas Vacation (but just once).