By Amelia Lowry
It’s not about liking the holiday as much as it is about hating Christmas.
“Dad, I’m hungry,” you whine from the passenger seat of his station wagon.
“Hi, Hungry, I’m Dad,” he says, and then chuckles.
You aren’t quite sure how to respond to your dad, so you angstily turn on the radio. You hope for some My Chemical Romance or some other emo screamo band.
Have a holly jolly Christmas, it’s the best time of the year…
“Wait, this isn’t Fall Out Boy,” you say tearfully under your breath. “It’s so hard being a teenager.”
“Hi, Christmas music, I’m Dad,” your dad says cheerfully.
Suddenly, it hits you that Christmas music is playing. It feels like just yesterday you had locked yourself in your room and repeatedly watched The Corpse Bride and celebrated the witching hour. This, more than anything, brings tears to your eyes. You hate Christmas, you hate being forced out of your room for extended periods of time. The idea of being bought colorful clothes by your un-edgy relatives makes your heart beat all “lickety split” as your dad would say. You hate when your heart beats, almost more than you hate Christmas.
“Where did Thanksgiving go? It’s not Christmas yet,” you say.
“Why’d the turkey cross the road?” your dad asks. After a dangling five minutes of silence, he gives you the answer. “To make way for Christmas.”
He chuckles as you let a tear escape from one of your penciled-in raccoon eyes.
“I gotta get out of here!” Honestly, you just wish it was Halloween forever.
“We gotta get out while we’re young, ‘cause tramps like us,” your dad sings in a constipated voice, the one he uses to impersonate Springsteen. “Baby, we were born to ruuun!”
This doesn’t cheer you up — nothing does. You’re dead inside 364 days of the year. Halloween is the only exception, the only day that can ease your unending pain.
But Halloween is gone. And Thanksgiving is, too — you haven’t heard a peep about it since October 31st. Knowing that you’re hungry (and that he’s Dad), your dad drives you to the mall complex and you get a bite to eat. Afterwards, you take a stroll inside the mall.
You would have flown to your favorite store, if you weren’t so anchored by your soul of lead. So instead you just walk to the only place where you feel understood: Hot Topic. You are able to escape the Christmas spirit for five minutes as you browse amongst your own kind.
Unfortunately, nothing is forever, especially happiness. Soon enough, an emo cover of a classic holiday song begins to play and all the other people in the store begin to headbang. This is not your place anymore. You have to go.
You walk into JCPenny’s, knowing you’ll find your dad somewhere in between the bow-tie and sock section. You are immediately overwhelmed with red and green. To your left and to your right, Christmas sweaters are advertised on plastic women. Underneath pine tree green fedoras, plastic men wear t-shirts brandishing Santa Claus’s face and his nine reindeer. There are red boxes with red ribbons piled high, a sea of last-thought presents — but there are no turkeys. There aren’t any gravy-colored accessories, there are no pictures of sweet potato casseroles on the fronts of t-shirts and sweaters.
“Hey there, sugar plum!” your dad calls suddenly. You turn and see him coming towards you with antlers on his head, and he’s jingling.
“Dad, oh my God. What are you wearing?” you ask
“But wait! There’s more!” he replies. He presses a button in his pocket and
his green tie is alight with miniature-colored LED bulbs. “Like it?”
You begin to cry. This is the worst day of your life, nobody understands you. You just wish there was some way to postpone Christmas and have a little bit more autumn.
The thought comes to you fast like one of your nihilist poems at 3 a.m.
Thanksgiving! Why is everyone erasing Thanksgiving?
You are surprised that you are advocating for Thanksgiving, as usually you have nothing to be thankful for. But this year, you are changed. You would be so thankful if the happy holiday season would go away, if you could go another month without giving, without the singing. You wonder why winter even has to exist — you hate having to compete about whose heart is more frozen (obviously, it’s yours).
You wish everyone would stop pretending like there aren’t two months between Halloween and the 25th of December. You wish the world would slow down and forget about winter, that Santa Claus would eat one too many cookies and burst. You wish everyone could feel the pain that you feel when you see an Advent Calendar, or anything at all.
Amelia Lowry is a Sophomore at Barbara Ingram.