The World Is Just Spinning Too Fast - Marie Ferrarella

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Tomorrow is Halloween, that one day a year where, after 364 days of telling our children not to take candy from strangers or even talk to strangers, we send them off, telling them it’s okay to take candy from strangers and talk to those same strangers as long as the words “trick or treat” are woven somewhere into the brief exchange. After that, Thanksgiving gallops by, pausing only long enough for a quick nod of acknowledgement. When did we really stop celebrating Thanksgiving? I can remember it being a really big deal when I was a kid. Now it’s just mostly recognized as being the day before the biggest sale day of the year.

The true focus of all this, of course, is Christmas. Is it just me, or does Christmas seem to arrive faster and faster each year? I can remember when I was a kid (and no, it wasn’t that many decades ago, it just feels that way) when Christmas seemed to take forever to get here and somehow, that made it all the more special when it finally did arrive. Now, our first hint of Christmas is when a world famous card store chain (which I dearly love and frequent often) puts out its first Christmas tree decorations—in the beginning of July (I fully expect that someday very soon, the first tannenbaum decoration will put in its appearance the day after Valentine’s Day). And then, everything after that, no matter what the holiday (the 4th of July, Memorial Day, Labor Day, etc.), in the back of everyone’s mind is the holiday that is swiftly approaching with the speed of a runaway toboggan on a forty-five degree incline.

Don’t get me wrong, I adore Christmas, I always have, even when the decorations on the tree (a real tree, not the ten foot artificial one my husband made me buy because he has more than a healthy respect—as well as first hand knowledge—of how fast a real Christmas tree can go up in flames) were only paper chains my mother and I made and secondhand balls and lights purchased from the local Salvation Army thrift shop. Adoring Christmas is one of the reasons why I begin putting up the ten foot tree the first of December. The tree, even with my daughter helping me (I get supervision from my husband and son, but not much hands-on help) takes three days to put up and I figure with that amount of time invested, I want to look at it for as long as possible.

To me, Christmas is a warm glow and the spirit of sharing and giving and there’s just nothing like it. But I’d really rather not have that “specialness” (I’m a writer, I can coin words if I want) to be defused by letting it spill over to the other months (I just saw a website that informed me there were only 57 shopping days left until Christmas, sigh). It’s getting so that there seems to be no point in taking down the tree at all because you turn around and it’s time to put it up again. Next year, after Christmas has come and gone (and the bills are just beginning to burn an imprint into your checking account), I just might decide to leave the tree up. I can throw a sheet over it and call it a Valentine Bush (and an Easter Bush after that). It’ll certainly save me time the first week in December. Time I can use shopping for Christmas presents. What do you think?

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