It begins anew every year at Thanksgiving. The second we cut the turkey it can be heard creeping over the horizon. It slithers through the radio, it assaults our ears at the store, and even follows us into the bathroom.

I am speaking, of course, about Christmas music.

Before the first day of December, Christmas music arrives once again to overstay its welcome. It’s the anthem to the Black Friday Carnage and sticks around well past the poor decisions you’re going to make at parties this New Year’s Eve.  

Christmas music lurks around every corner, waiting for you, playing its siren songs, stealing away your souls, one gingerbread crumb at a time.

It’s like that U2 album on all of our iPods; it doesn’t matter how much you hate it, you’ll never be able to get rid of it.

As bad as Christmas music can be, no one has it worse than retail employees. Day in and day out it’s “Have a Holly Jolly Christmas,” “All I Want For Christmas Is You” and “Jingle Bells,” somehow all sung by Mariah Carey. Employees working at the mall hear every slimy rhyme, every rancid rhythm, every noxious note, and every crusty crescendo.

The next time you’re at the store, look into the soulless eyes of employees who have “Frosty the Snow Man” permanently stuck in their brains. Watch as tears roll down their cheeks. “Help,” they might whisper, but help never comes, only Mariah Carey with another song.

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