No one will deny that A Charlie Brown Christmas, which Abby and I watched last night, was right on the money about Christmas being trivialized and commercialized. It’s easy to imagine the corruption of this beloved holiday as a latter-day event, A Charlie Brown Christmas was first broadcast in 1965.
Commercialization of things we loved as children is never new in a capitalist/mercantilist society. The only thing to do is hold in your thoughts what is truly meaningful about Christmas. For me, in all honesty, Christmas is about photography and not much else.
One thing about Christmas that irks me to the bone (how’s that for a mixed metaphor?) is how utterly crappily-made Christmas stuff is. Fake trees, toys, garland, lights, decorations, etc., are all cobbled together with the frailty of an injured baby squirrel. The margin must be incredible; do you think $1 worth of Christmas decorations cost even 1¢ to manufacture?
I think about this because for the second time in seven years, I am having to remove the lights on a pre-lit artificial Christmas tree because the wiring and rigging is so flimsy that when I plugged this one in today, none – NONE – of the lights came on. No amount of jiggling or twisting or plugging-and-unplugging of bulbs made any difference. It’s dead.
The commercialist answer, of course, is to buy a new one, but you know what? I already showed up once with my money. I’m not buying another $129 piece of plastic crap.