On my morning walk today I took a slightly different route and passed a house that I haven’t seen in awhile. They had Christmas decorations up.
Lights in the trees, a candy cane thing above the garage, some other Christmas-y stuff in the front windows.
Well. This set me to thinking so furiously that I almost didn’t hear the rest of the podcast I was listening to. I just have so many questions.
First of all, why? Why would you have Christmas decorations up on November 13th? It hasn’t even been two weeks since Halloween and you’ve completely made the seasonal transition from fall to winter. What’s the rush?
Which also got me to wondering: if Christmas decorations are going up hard on the heels of Halloween — and without any apparent consideration for an intervening holiday, Thanksgiving — how long will someone with such an agenda leave the Christmas-themed decorations up, anyway?
That train of thought led to this puzzle (which I am by no means at all close to solving): exactly what holiday is it that this person is celebrating?
I mean, I understand that in our 21st century culture we all kind of have different spins on what Christmas is. So you can kind of decide, according to your personal spin, how you celebrate that winter holiday that’s sort of generically, anymore, referred to as “Christmas.”
An article I read a few years ago put forth the idea that nowadays there are two Christmases, really: the religious one (call it the Jesus Christmas), and the secular/cultural one (the Santa Claus Christmas). Therefore everyone who “does” Christmas is participating, shall we say, in the holiday in either, or even both, of these ways.
And since we can assume the decorations on one’s home are an outward show of one’s “spirit” of Christmas, I guess what I’m really wondering is: what’s going on inside the house? Are they listening to Christmas music already? Wrapping presents? Putting up a tree? A creche? And if so … why?
I also had one more, much smaller question about the decorated house I walked past. The house is situated on the far end of a little cul de sac, one of about six homes on this short lane, and nowhere near the main drag that runs through our neighborhood. Who, exactly, is going to even see all this festive ornamentation?
Seriously, I don’t get it.