by Thomas Pinkava
Thou’rt warnèd: what lies below is misanthropism and cynicism! Begone if thou valuest thy peace of mind!
If you couldn’t guess from a glance at the calendar, a trip to the shops, or nearly being run over by an inflatable snowman, the holidays are here. The most wonderful time of the year has rolled around again. Hark, the herald pop singer is screeching tunelessly at ten billion decibels. If you feel like you are drowning in plastic rubbish, or that the local department store is out to kill you and blend your body into a festive beverage, relax.
Or maybe don’t. Maybe this is the time to wake up, to take a stand against the rampant commercialization of the season. Maybe this is the year when, at last, we throw off our peppermint-flavored shackles and rise up against the travesty that this otherwise pleasant time has become. Maybe, however, this is not the time for revolution. Maybe the time is never. Maybe we can perpetually endure increasingly whiny renditions of ‘Santa Baby’. If so, our situation is dire. If we never change — we never have — at this rate, we never will — we will all fall under the heels of the corporate machine.
However, change just might not be the answer. Maybe revolution will leave us worse off than before. Although it’s difficult to consider a fate worse than excessive tinsel, the remarkable thing about the human condition is that it’s never so bad that it can’t get worse.
And then there’s the real kicker to consider: an idea uglier than the ugliest of sweaters. Maybe you are the cause of this madness. Maybe, by your very nature, you, the consumer, the endpoint, the proletariat, are the holes into which this evil hooks. Maybe by your inactivity, by your lack of attempts to fight back, you have become complacent and indifferent — goodness forbid, even accepting — of what the holidays have become.
Ponder that. And try not to get run over by an inflatable snowman.