I was appalled yesterday afternoon when the kids and I watched as employees at Target consolidated Halloween gear to make room for the Christmas decorations. I was annoyed today when I could barely navigate a cart through HomeGoods because of the plethora of Halloween decor. But Linens-n-Things? They’ve gone too far. Not only have they handed over the front two large sections to Christmas gear, but they are playing Christmas carols in that area. Christmas carols. On October 1.
Retailers in the United States have gone too far.
We’ve barely left summer behind. The trees are only just beginning to change to brilliant shades of reds, yellows and orange. Halloween is still a month away. We’re in apple-picking season. It’s time for hayrides and pumpkin patches. I still need to find the perfect costumes for Will and Paige. Haunted houses and spooky hayrides are calling …
Yet, when you go to these mass retailers, you are smacked in the face with a holiday that is yet three months away. I don’t like getting smacked. I am not ready for the cheer of Christmas to invade my psyche.
This rushing of holidays — Halloween being packed away before we even need to tuck into soft sweaters — is a prime example of retailers trying to over-capitalize on holidays. Do you remember the days when retailers didn’t revolve their displays around holiday-pegged merchandise? When you could go to Caldor’s in September and just get some ball-fringe curtains without having to duck through racks of shiny ornaments and happy holidays greeting cards? I miss those days.
It’s not yet time for the glittering lawn snowmen and twinkling lights displays to tempt me. In fact, they serve only as a turnoff. I am very tempted to just not shop at Target, Linens-n-Things, and other holiday rushing retailers until the holiday is actually here. In my book, that is the day after Thanksgiving.
But then, what will be on display come November? Will Christmas gear be banished to a corner to make room for heart-shaped displays since Valentine’s Day will only be a few short months away?
I understand that retailers are concerned about making their budgets for the year. I even understand that someone somewhere honestly believes that if you deck the shelves with holly and tinsel, people will buy whether it’s June or December. Perhaps some people even will.
Not me though. And frankly, for me, it’s just a matter of choice not to waste my gas driving to the mass marketers when I can shop local stores. Sure, it might cost a little more, but so does driving to the big mass retailers, so it kind of all evens out.
Frankly, I think that mass retailers are stealing the joy from the holidays by shoving them down our throats way before their arrival. It’s not fair — not to shoppers, not to people working hard to stay afloat, not to parents, not to kids, not to anyone.
What do you think? Are you disgusted by the rushing of holidays?