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I don’t know if you know this about me or not, but I’m not a big fan of Christmas.
Now, I’m far from being a Scrooge – I don’t “hate” Christmas, it just doesn’t mean as much to me know as it did when I was a kid. (I’m sure most of my peers can relate?) I was hoping that things might change this year because I am surrounded by kids at my new job, but so far, it hasn’t made a difference. Maybe I have to wait for there to be kids in my immediate family or for my almost-nieces to live closer for that Christmas spirit to return?
For me, shopping any where in the month of December is one of the things that I dislike about this time of year. This is partially because I don’t like spending money and sometimes that feels like that’s what Christmas is all about. But it’s also because I don’t like crowded places, I don’t like waiting in line, and I tend to get road-rage-ish in busy parking lots. For the most part, my flexible schedule allows me to avoid stores on weekends, run my errands at off-peak times, and I simply park a little farther away.
Another thing that I dislike about Christmas is the music. This time of year, it’s almost impossible to leave the house without hearing a little Jingle Bells or White Christmas. The gym has even added a few pop-versions of the holiday classics to its rotation!
Thankfully I’m in a separate room where my co-worker and I get to decide what we watch and/or listen to, and for the most part it’s too chaotic with kids playing and sometimes babies crying to even notice. I wasn’t so lucky at a retail job I had several years back that played the same 11 Christmas songs on repeat for all of November and December! (Maybe that was my breaking point?)
According to a nationwide poll by the Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada (SOCAN), I am, however, in the minority. Apparently, 82% of Canadians enjoy Christmas music when shopping. Really, guys? 82%!
But if you are one of those 18%-ers like me, there are basically two ways you can survive the sounds of the holidays:
Listen to Your Own Music
I survive with a good pair of headphones. While shopping, I listen to my own music (from my phone or my MP3 player if I’m really prepared!). I tend to keep the volume on the low-side so that I can still hear what’s going on around me, but some days and some moods require cranking it up a little more! The Monster headphones I have are particularly great for this, because there is a pause-button right on the headphone cable, which makes it easy to stop and chat with people you know or to ask an employee for assistance.
Or Learn to Love It
Another way I survive is to find those few Christmas songs that I actually kinda like. For the most part it’s not the songs themselves that I dislike, but the repetitiveness of hearing the same dozen songs over and over again, sometimes with a different singer or beat. By identifying a few songs or versions of songs that I actually like, I am excited when I hear them out in public, which makes me “hate” Christmas music a little less.
Some of these songs include:
Oi! To the World – The Vandals
… because punk versions are somehow better.
Carol of the Bells – The Trans-Siberian Orchestra
… because there is a lesser-known version with lyrics.
All I Want For Christmas is You – Olivia Olson (from Love, Actually)
… because she KILLS it!
Christmastime Is Here – Vince Guaraldi Trio
… because it’s a Charlie Brown Christmas.
Making Christmas – The Nightmare Before Christmas
… because who doesn’t love a Halloween/Christmas cross over?
Anything by the Jingle Cats
… because this is the internet, after all.
Using these methods aren’t fool-proof, but they will hopefully help avoid any unnecessary holiday stress!
What’s your favourite Christmas and/or Holiday song?
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