A Christmas without gifts?
Would it really be so bad?
Has anyone ever died
because they missed a TV ad?
Every goddamn year,
people fight over ‘smart TVs’
and camp out at a store
like trained chimpanzees.
Into the store you go.
You do exactly as you’re told.
On Monday, hit the keyboard,
and yet, another diamond sold.
What holiday is this?
Did you miss the memo too?
What happened to peace and love?
You’ve turned this earth into a zoo!
Fights broke out here!
There’s shooting over there!
You stomp each other every year
trying to buy some Tupperware!
So, you’ve got your shopping done.
For those gifts, yes you did brawl.
You found everything you need,
but was Jesus at the mall?
Now, sing your songs about his birth.
Oh, what joy it brings!
You hocked your ass to death
for all those stupid things!
Shelby I. Courtland
©2017 Shelby I. Courtland
Today, I was asked if I had my Christmas shopping done. The question was posed by a stranger, someone who obviously did not know me. And I answered, “No one is getting a damn thing from me! They never do!” And I was quite surprised when the lady stated that she was of the same mindset and that she had ditched that shopping madness shit years ago. I told her, “Good for her!” There were others around and we had a lively conversation about this. Here in my neck of the woods, there weren’t many long lines snaking around stores waiting for them to open. Many people are as fed up with this spoon fed shop ’til you drop shit as I am and here I thought I was out in left field all by my lonesome in my views of what the ‘celebration’ is supposed to be about.
Long before Christmas even rolls around, even before Thanksgiving, we are bombarded with advertisements to spend, spend, spend money that we don’t even have but because deep discounts are touted, we are made to feel that if we don’t hock something at least, to buy that too good to miss TV deal that we are just slackers. There is never even time to sit down at a table to try and be thankful that we are alive on Thanksgiving Day because before that day and even during that day, we are told to go out and shop. We are told to buy a turkey with all the trimmings and then get right up, head out the door and make sure that we keep shareholders of corporations in the black while our financial situation is in the red.
There are many people who are living paycheck to paycheck and who can barely keep a roof over their head and with their paychecks not keeping up with inflation; the high cost of living, they are still expected to pull money out of their ass to buy gifts. What in the world could you possibly need since you go through this mess every single year? How many TVs and Keurig coffee makers, microwave ovens, vacuum cleaners, SUVs and the list is endless do you really need?
The next time you are out driving around, visit a landfill just to get some idea of what we use and then throw away. What will it take to get you to realize that those boxes, Styrofoam, plastic and associated items to keep that coffee maker secure inside that box are filling up landfills everywhere, not to mention, the toxins that come from those products are seeping into our groundwater and we are drinking them every single day. You don’t ever wonder at the price we pay for our headlong rush to get some great deals, but it will all soon come back to bite us on the ass. If you really cared for your children and your grandchildren, you would sit them down and explain to them why you are not getting them something that they’ll play with for a few minutes and then toss to the side. You would explain to them that their very lives depend on you not shopping for yet another doll, another video game, another toy and another and another.
At least I can be thankful that some people are finally waking up and realizing that they have been nothing more than mindless shopping drones who have been programmed to spend too much money to enable shareholders to happily deposit their dividend checks and to enable CEOs of corporations to buy yet another island paradise with that bonus check thanks to overzealous shopping habits because of commercials insisting that you spend yourself to death.
A Christmas without gifts? Would it really be so bad?