Sunday, November 21, 2010

Thoughts on November and Thanksgiving

I'd have to say this is one of my least favorite months. Taking down my jack-o-lantern bags on the first day of this month, and waiting for Veteran's Day and Thanksgiving to pass, while seeing Christmas stuff all over stores. November is the dreary month in between October and its Halloween madness and December, with its frenzied holiday shopping that actually begins one day after Thanksgiving.

Don't get me wrong, I don't hate Thanksgiving, but in recent my family hasn't done much, and when they did, all anyone ever did was sit around watching football while waiting for dinner to be ready. For this year, my mom and I and a friend (with nothing to do herself) of the family are making plans to go out to dinner and then to a movie. We don't know which one yet, but I already having in mind three Thanksgiving Day premiers, "Tangled," "Burlesque," or "Love and Other Drugs." Then I'll be off on Friday, but have no plans to go shopping. I tend to avoid the Black Friday madness. Even though we have Target and Kmart in my town, I don't see myself awakening at 2AM on Friday to get ready and then rush down to either store. I always have to get up at 4AM for work and this one of the rare Fridays I don't have to that. If I must get out, I'll wait till later in the day since i have no intention of trying to buy something the stores predict will be sold out in the first few minutes of the early-morning shopping frenzy.

Many seem bothered by the fact that Thanksgiving is mostly ignored by stores and such. Very few decorations are sold, but then does anyone actually put stuff for Thanksgiving on their lawns and porches? For Halloween someone will hang a paper ghost from the edge of the roof or place a carved pumpkin on the lawn or porch, and for Christmas, they will hang colored lights on the side of the house and maybe place a statuette of Santa in the yard. And of there are the Christmas trees. But has anyone ever seen any comparable decorations on lawns and porches for Thanksgiving? None that I have ever seen. The most Thanksgiving gets is displays of turkey-roasting pans, bags of flour and boxes of stuffing. Both the Dollar Tree and Safeway in my town have displays like these right now. The last time I was at Safeway I saw Stove Top stuffing on sale "Buy One, Get One Free." I took advantage of this offer, even though I have no big plans for this Thursday. I figured stuffing is good for dinner any time. That night, I also got some chicken and made the chicken and stuffing for dinner that night. OK, back on track. Is this all Thanksgiving gets in stores? But I think this blogger said it best when he said we can't sell thankfulness:
I’m sure part of it has to do with the fact you can’t really “sell” Thanksgiving. On Halloween you sell costumes and candy. On Christmas you sell everything else and candy. Honestly though, on Thanksgiving it’s hard to sell anything other than turkey. Maybe that’s the reason. We live in America, you can’t sell thankfulness.

Zachary Indian Corn
I have to agree. Turkey and other food served for Thanksgiving dinners is about all stores and such seem to emphasize. And maybe a few tablecloths, paper plates, cups and napkins with turkey motifs. You don't see too many Thanksgiving-themed candies, unlike seasonal candies made for most other holidays. No Turkey Peeps, for instance. The Indian Corn version of Candy Corn comes close, but even that flavor is more commonly sold at Halloween, along with the regular orange, yellow and white Candy Corn. Candy Corn of course, comes in other holiday colors, such as the Reindeer Corn (red, green and white) for Christmas; the pink, white and red Valentines version, and the pastel-colored Easter variation.

And it seems that people sit around all Thanksgiving morning watching the Macy's Thanksgiving day parade and then the football games. If the holiday is supposed to be a bout families being together, then how does watching all this stuff constitute that? Not everyone in the family likes football. Maybe you should consider the movie option?

Do I use November to start Christmas shopping? Not always, I can't remember when I last did so. Not sure about this year, since the month will be over in nine days.

Since I don't plan on trying to beat the early-morning crowds on Friday morning, I will likely still be in bed then, since this will be a rare Friday that I don't have to be up early for work. Unfortunately, even though I don't normally work such a shift or on such a night, I have to work next Saturday at 7PM. No clue as to why or what....

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