So here we are, heading into probably my favorite holiday of the year, Thanksgiving and what do advertisers want us to see – Christmas ads, gobs and gobs of Christmas ads. They’ve got ads about cars and electronics and furniture and anything else you can imagine, all for the purpose of separating you from your money, in the name of what should be a time of heightened spiritual reflection. Is it just me, or do you find this more than a little bit disturbing?
Store-front windows are adorned with Christmas wreaths and lights. TV ads tout Black Friday deals, starting now. Where is the decency? Where is the restraint? Why can’t we simply enjoy Thanksgiving festivities with our families first and think about all that comes with Christmas after we’ve digested a fabulous turkey dinner and seen a few football games on TV?
Has the pursuit of the dollar, sales and profits completely over-run American culture?
My friends sometimes reflect on the pace of life and ask, where has the time gone? Why is it that it moves so quickly? It could be that we, ourselves are to blame. You hear it all the time – “I’ve got a million things to do today.” “I’ve got to get-through the holidays.” Get through the holidays? How about stopping to enjoy each moment of your day, your existence and the blessings in your life.
I got on the elevator the other day, heading down to my parking spot and a guy hopped on, his face firmly planted in his clipboard and when the doors closed, he realized he was headed down, instead of up which is where he intended to go. He looked at me and said, “I’m trying to do 20-things at once.”
No wonder folks think time flies. They’re charging from one task to the next – get this done, get the kids here, or there, get to the store and back home. They’ll say, “There’s not enough time in the day.” They drive too close to the car in front of them, rushing from appointment to appointment, talking on their phone, or even worse, trying to send text messages while they drive, barely paying attention to the traffic, let alone to the world around them. It always kills me to see young folks, traipsing down a sidewalk, nose firmly planted in their phone, barely avoiding a collision with other people, strolling the other way.
Is this what we’ve become, or can we be better?
When I speak with people from my generation, they say, they want to slow-down and be finished with the grind that they’ve experienced for decades. They know that there’s something better for them, a place of peace, calm, tranquility and quiet contemplation.
Every seven years, my birthday falls on Thanksgiving, which makes the push for Christmas extra toxic, for me. Because I’m an optimistic guy, I believe that advertisers will get smarter and understand that most people do want to pause, give thanks and eventually celebrate Christmas.
So, my message to you is this, happy holidays and may you enjoy a good feast. May you have a long and healthy life. May your prayers be answered and your journey through life be rich and rewarding.