Fall: it brings up the wonderful aromas of spices and beautiful colours that surround us as our short-lived summer closes. With the passing of Halloween, all the seasonal bliss disappears and, somehow, it’s Christmas. Lately, it seems that our consumerist society has begun shoving holiday-themed merchandise down our throats more than ever before.
The transition between Halloween and Christmas has proven to be the most controversial because Remembrance Day falls right between the pumpkin spice and peppermint storms.
Personally, I am disappointed to see stores loading their shelves with Christmas inventory on Nov. 1. I understand that from a business standpoint, the earlier you get it out, the sooner people can buy it. However, it feels like Remembrance Day is getting pushed by the wayside.
If Santa had died for our freedom, then I’m sure our current holiday model would work. But being that Santa is a social recluse who only comes out whilst the world sleeps, then disappears for another 364 days, he’s hardly worth the attention he receives. The military service people who fight and perish for our country’s freedoms deserve more thanks than they get; Nov. 11 is the day we take to remember their sacrifices. It doesn’t seem that arduous to spend one day out of the year to think about the people who fight the battles in which many of us would not engage.
I remember when I was younger, it was always the case that when you turned on the TV in early November, something Remembrance Day-oriented was on. If it was not the story of Flanders Fields, it was documentaries or homages to soldiers.
Since then, though, I haven’t seen anything. A few days ago, I saw The Grinch being played, and while I love the Christmas classic, it just seemed too soon.
Some select stores in Edmonton leave their holiday shelves empty for the first 11 days of November. Instead of products, they put out poppies and signs saying “Lest We Forget.” As a consumer, I feel more inclined to shop at the stores that have donation tubs for veterans and give respect to the soldiers of our country. The stores that do not display these signs for the veterans are not inherently awful, but I have no inclination to support shops that do not publicly support our troops.
This November, wear your poppy. Adorn your chest proudly, either throughout the entire month or just until Remembrance Day. Christmas will always be around, and it can wait at least 11 days, until we have all paid our respects.
Photo by *sax, Flickr Creative Commons.