It’s November 1st, which means only one thing; Christmas.
Once the clock struck 12 am on this hallowed morn, Starbucks and Butlers decided to throw their red Christmas cups at anyone who mentioned almond milk cappuccino in a 5-mile radius, and Instagram is now radiant with carefully painted nails and hot chocolates. There is the distant whisper of Bono singing ‘Do they know it’s Christmas time’ down Grafton Street and there is an overwhelming urge to drink mulled wine on your lunch break. But have we lost the Christmas plot?
Once Halloween departs, there is a significant anticipation of something happier and more red on the horizon. However, this year, more than ever, it seems like the countdown to Christmas started in April. Christmas windows are completed, there’s a Christmas tree in Temple Bar and all of your classic Christmas favourite’s such as USA biscuits and Quality Street are on special offer in Supervalu.
And people are stocking up, because of the usual Christmas supermarket shut down fear. This is the paranoia that the shops may never open again which means stocking up on twenty sliced pans and 5 gallons of milk every day until then. However, the devastating closure never happens and they are back in for more Brennan’s bread on St Stephen’s Day.
I am a Christmas fiend, but over the last few years, I have noticed that the earlier I hop on the bandwagon, the quicker I can lose the Christmas buzz. And when it eventually arrives with Rudolph and a mince pie in tow, it’s anti-climactic in many ways.
Some say we have ruined the Christmas experience by being over-eager. The retail industry ropes us in with pine scented candles and dancing Santa’s and we can’t keep our money in our pockets. And once the temperature drops below ten degrees we’re all suddenly in a real-life version of Love Actually in October.
Ultimately, complaining about premature festive fever won’t stop Starbucks and their army of Instagram cup holders, or Christmas FM from taking hold of our airwaves. So the best course of action is to put on your Santa hat and grin and bear it.
My official Christmas countdown doesn’t begin until the John Lewis advert appears on my Twitter feed (this year it’s reportedly with Elton John in tow). However, until then, I will take joy in the small glimmers of Christmas that I get and bask in my weekly dose of shivers as I listen to George Michael whispering Last Christmas into my ear.
It only comes once a year, and when it’s there it disappears just as quick. Enjoy it and savour it because in January when it’s dreary and there are fewer fairy lights in the world, you’ll be wishing you had the excuse to stock up on all that white bread again.
But if you really do despise it, then turn off the Christmas music and walk past the jolly decorations.
And bring your own cup into Starbucks.