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It’s not that we begrudge home centers making their profit. In fact, we like them and shop there all the time. However, when I’m heading in to pick up some drywall anchors, a few potting planters, and an A/C filter and am confronted with a scene like this pictured above, I’m annoyed.

It’s nothing new: This same scenario has been played out earlier every season for the last 20 or so years. In our local big box the holiday trees went up on Labor Day. Here are a few tidbits to remember when navigating the buying rush this season.

First: Everything holiday-looking is full- (full actually meaning “over”) priced right now, and will remain so until the second week in December. Unless you plan on paying through the nose, leave it if you don’t need it.

Second: Ordering your holiday swag online will often let you avoid the lines and screaming children, as well as give you a decent break on pricing whenever you order it.

Third: How many light-up reindeer do you really need? I mean honestly, do you think they will begin to multiply on their own should you supply enough electricity and a hostility-free environment? (I’m talking to you, neighbor across the street; you’re making the rest of us look bad.)

Fourth: This year I’m going to support Nordstorm’s if at all possible. They have this great policy where they don’t start selling for one holiday until the current one is finished. My hat is off to them.

Regardless, hold on to your cash as much as you can, and you’ll find it makes for a happier holiday season.

Nordstrom holds off on holiday decorating [abc15]


18 Responses to Editorial: Holiday Time Is Not Here Yet

  1. zoidberg says:

    Seriously, would it kill us to call it “Christmas”? Even if you’re not religious at all, the term “holidays” is still pretty stupid. We’re using it as a euphamism for Christmas, but we forget that the term “holiday” originates from “holy day”…

    If we want to talk about Christmas, just say “christmas” for crying out loud! Some might get offended but honestly, you can’t do anything without offending someone these days so why worry about it? I thought we were over the “PC” days of the 1990s…

    • Rembret says:

      Well said. Thank you.

    • Jerry says:

      Last year a bell ringer for the Salvation Army said they were not allowed to say “Christmas.” Very odd for ‘that’ organization.
      Oh well, I was apparently born without the Politically Correct gene – must have since I get corrected so often. I just ignore it and say what I feel.

    • Eric says:

      Right on. Heck, I’m an atheist Jew who wishes the stores didn’t look like that three months of the year, but when stores (and people) mean Christmas, say Christmas! Nothing wrong with that.

  2. Ben Granucci says:

    I agree 1,000,000% A few weeks ago, I ventured over to one of the local big box stores in search of a deck box for my just-completed patio. Over to the garden center I went, only to find an assortment of artificial trees and assorted other decorations. It wasn’t the full lineup, but it was definitely a good start. I found the deck box, at a really good clearance price, but I had to endure “The Nutcracker Suite” while I looked at it. It nearly drove me mad.

    What is worse for me is that 4-6 weeks prior to Halloween, all of the decorations for that holiday have already been relegated to a back corner or random aisle. Right now I could possibly see that, but not 4-6 weeks out from a holiday that is seeing more and more decorating every year. I have to believe that the stores have done their research, and that they have concluded that not only do people want to buy their Christmas decorations months in advance, but that it is worth devoting what is in some cases prime display space to selling these items. Personally, from Labor Day to Halloween or shortly before, I would think that a store would make far more money devoting their “smack you in the face as you walk through the door” real estate to a mixture of fall items ranging from Halloween decorations to fall cleanup supplies to those summer items that they would really like to get rid of before the holidays. Maybe even throw in some snow removal stuff in those parts of the country that get it earlier in the season. I can’t imagine most people re even thinking about buying Christmas decorations until Halloween is over.

  3. Angelbane says:

    1) I agree I am P’Oed to see Christmas stuff out when there are at least TWO holidays before it. And i do begrudge them making a profit in this way much in the way that I HATE not being able to find shorts or short sleeve shirts in September because the Winter clothes are already on the shelves.

    2) In an effort to be PC and not offend people the Majority of this country is insulted (and offended if they realize what is happening) that their holidays are marginalized.

    (on a related note the Separation of church and state is a MYTH)

  4. Mike47 says:

    On another related note, there’s NOTHING in the Constitution that guarantees freedom from being offended.

  5. Brau says:

    What bothers me is that by the time Christmas arrives I’m already sick and tired of hearing carols playing and seeing cheesy Xmas ads for over two months. This is, however, a so-called “free” country, and I would be remiss not to mention how different we’d feel living in a country where people are publicly hanged for not conforming to the majority religious belief.

    To take offence is a conscious decision.

  6. IBMcginty says:

    This doesn’t bother me, but it does bother my wife.
    I’ve never understood it; every store I walk into has many things I’m not interested in buying that particular day. The funny thing is that I’m typically the more tightly wound of the two of us.

  7. browndog77 says:

    Hats off to Nordstrom for their trend-bucking stance, but time will tell if they hold their ground on this. Retailers typically have a hard time standing by while their competitors are raking in profits, and stockholders don’t like it much.

  8. Chris says:

    zoidberg: I believe Sean was ranting about the propensity of ALL holidays to be over-promoted three months before they actually happen. Halloween stuff very closely followed the back-to-school sales at most of the large stores around my area. Thanksgiving stuff has been out for over a month now. As soon as Christmas Eve hits, Valentine’s Day stuff will show up, then Easter, then Fourth of July, ad nauseam.


    • Just a note — Chris is correct.

      Using the word “holiday” is a conscious choice — not to appease obnoxious, atheistic, liberal elites — but to refer to how $^@* annoying it is that the big boxes do this for pretty much all holidays, holy days, what have you.

      Anyone who knows Sean (TM co-founder and author of the post) knows he’s not the type to mince words or play political games. If he says “holiday,” it’s not because he’s too nervous to say “Christmas.” It’s because he means holidays in general.

      And on a personal note, there’s an awfully strong backlash these days, especially here in TX, for anyone who DOESN’T use the word “Christmas.” Isn’t that sort of ironic, considering that the initial outrage came from people who felt they weren’t being allowed to use the terms they wanted?

      Choosing to say “happy holidays” this season should not be assumed to be a giant middle finger to Christianity or America or anything else. It’s just a warm sentiment, phrased to include even more people.

      We should not get a huge chip on our collective shoulder about what words people use when they wish us well, and that should apply in any direction.

  9. Mike Lee says:

    I just brought a 1/4 inch, 20 piece kobalt ratchet set for 10 bucks. You won’t find it much cheaper than that.

  10. dtac says:

    The whole Xmas thing has gotten so over the top that if I had the money I would spend the period from Thanksgiving to Christmas in Isreal. And I’m not even Jewish.

  11. GadgetLovingGeezer says:

    zoidberg: There are at least 3 holidays in the late November – January timeframe in which gift giving is a tradition, including Christmas, Kwanzaa, and Hanukkah.

    See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kwanzaa and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hanukkah to learn about them.

  12. “Holiday” displays in stores in early October, when the actual “holiday” isn’t until late December? It makes me want to puke. We are still almost 60 days away from the actual “holiday”! It’s just tacky on top of tacky.

    As for the actual phrasing of holidays vs. Christmas… I used to say “Merry Christmas”, until people were offended that I left them out. So I said “Happy Holidays” until people were offended that I wasn’t honoring Christmas by excluding everyone else. Now I just say “up yours” and include everybody!

    The “Christ-is-the-reason-for-the-season” folks have forgotten where the tradition of leaving presents under a tree came from. The whole Christmas celebration has roots in all kinds of religion that have nothing to do with Christ, so please just let it be!

    But mainly, the stores need to quit being so tacky. It’s the Christian thing to do!

  13. Toolfreak says:

    Anyone who’s wanting to save money already knows about buying their decorations and stuff AFTER the holiday, when stuff is on 90% off clearance. It’s annoying to have to put up with 3 months of Christmas/Holiday decorations, music, and all that sure, but I don’t mind so much if the tool discounts start rolling in.

    Shopping during the holidays in cool weather, being able to browse your favorite stores and check out all the cool new tools and gadgets has it’s own charm. I can kind of understand the idea behind trying to extend that to go earlier than November. Plus I guess there’s no harm in stores raking it in from those suckers who buy decorations ASAP just so they can be the first on the block with their whole house and yard fully decorated, so they can support the local power company too.

  14. Frank says:

    Someone already said this but had to add nonetheless – it’s Christmas NOT holiday. I agree it’s far from Christmas time, my next “holiday” is Thanksgiving…so that being said, if I don’t post anytime ’til Have a Merry Christmas!

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