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Last night I stopped at my local Giant for some groceries on the way home from work, and I was a bit disheartened by what I saw as I walked in. Right there at the front of the store, in the place normally reserved for weekly featured items or the like, was a fantastic array of Christmas wrapping accessories. The size and variety of the display, with all its festive colors and images, was truly amazing.

Now, I understand that the retailers need to squeeze every penny they can out of the holiday season, especially in this economy, but come on. I am tired of just glossing over two holidays and skipping directly to Christmas.

Halloween is one of my favorite times of the year. It gives us all a chance to drop all of our normally well positioned social armor and become someone, or something, else for a night or two. The stress of today’s world will drive you crazy, and, thus, every opportunity we can find to cut loose and feel free, even if only for one evening, can be incredibly therapeutic. So, don’t skip Halloween, embrace its spirit even if it’s just renting your favorite scary movie and snuggling on the couch with popcorn. For one night remember what its like to have fear be that adrenaline that dashes up and down your spine not the pit in your stomach when you hear rumors of layoffs.

Glossing over Halloween is bad, but at least it gets some buildup before Christmas kicks in. Thanksgiving seems to get entirely swept under the rug. And this, my friends, is a sin. Thanksgiving isn’t all about the food, football, and family dysfunction. It’s about taking time to reflect. It’s about realizing that, no matter how bad it seems, we all have something to be thankful for.  I know that I, personally am have a lot to reflect on this year.  I have a loving wife, great friends, and a rekindled relationship with my family.  And that’s just a start.

 

I guess my point is, we need to be careful as a society not to let the flash and gitter of the retail Christmas machine to overwhelm us as we move into this time of year.  Christmas is wonderful, don’t get me wrong.  But, this year I think perhaps the therapy of Halloween and the reflection of Thanksgiving mean just a little bit more. 

So, Happy Holidays, everyone.  All of them in equal measure.

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