It’s been a while since I’ve been truly annoyed about something, hasn’t it? I hope so, because otherwise I’m in danger of becoming a grumpy old lady and my family hates it when that happens.
Here’s my problem: I was brought up to believe that cold snowy days happen in Winter and hot sunny days were something we could expect in Summer.
I was also led to believe (falsely, now I come to discover) that in the Northern Hemisphere, Easter happens in Spring and Christmas only occurs in Winter.
How wrong I was! Silly me.
Two weeks ago, I received a disturbing photo on Instragram from a popular shopper’s paradise in England called Selfridges. They’re big. Like, really big. As in, I do most of my shopping there, from coffee downstairs to delicious foods on the main floor, to bath towels upstairs.
Some followers laughed, while others, like me, let their voices be heard. Here’s a sampling:
Tell ur ppl to stop killing my summer dreammmmm I don’t want xmas yet
What a joke, it’s August?!
Guys, update your calendar cus it’s august
Ridiculous, I can’t buy a bikini in summer for my holiday and you think people want to Xmas shop! Don’t you ever ask customers what they actually want???
What in seven hells!?!?! It’s only August. That is seriously mental and not in a good way.
And so on.
This is how @theofficialselfridges replied:
We have opened the Christmas shop early this year to ensure all our customers have ample time to get that one true gift.
Bah humbug. Poppycock and balderdash.
Before you think this is just one store trying to jump the gun, let me tell you that yesterday, I received this in my email:
Underneath this very bizarre photo of Santa actually leading his reindeer in a flying car, was this helpful little message:
As a valued Harrods Rewards member, we are delighted to inform you that your priority booking for The Harrods Christmas Grotto opens on Wednesday 11th September 2013. We will send you a reminder email on this date with a link to the booking site.
One store being a grasping, cynical, soulless conglomerate with no thought to its customers needs and desires is one thing. But two?
Guaranteed, as sure as Santa has to go on a diet every summer, where Harrods and Selfridges lead, others will follow. They’ll have no choice, they’ll say. If they want to capture a section of the almighty Christmas market, they’ll have to start decking their halls as well.
This upsets me because I know London isn’t the only place this is happening.
A few years ago, when I lived in Hong Kong, I asked the manager of a very upmarket shop called Oliver’s, why he was selling Easter chocolates in January. We hadn’t even started shopping for Chinese New Year yet and already chocolate bunnies were hopping onto the store shelves. He gave me a very convoluted answer involving shipping costs, refrigeration and by the time he’d finished, I’d lost the will to live and limped out of the store a dejected woman.
When we used to live in the US in the 80s, I was horrified to discover the Christmas rush began the second after American Thanksgiving was over. When I was growing up, Christmas shopping began after the 1st week of December and that seemed normal and right.
Now, I’d give anything if merchants waited until the end of November. By the time December rolls around, I’ll be bored to death with tinsel, polar bears, fake snow and ruddy carols playing overhead on an endless loop.
I’m grouchy already, come to think of it. Come on, Selfridges and Harrods, sell us the right things at the right time of year.
Please, if you feel as passionately about this as I do, then contact these stores and let your voice be heard.
And keep an eye out, because I have a feeling this isn’t just happening here. If it can happen to me, it can happen to you. Write, protest, make your voice heard. If this doesn’t stop soon, we’ll be buying Hallowe’en sweets and pumpkins in February, back-to-school items in March and Valentine’s gifts in October.
Let’s stop the craziness and make this year be the last year Christmas starts in August. Are you with me?
your very annoyed sister
- Harrods Christmas preview (beautyvoyage.wordpress.com)
- Heels to Deals: A Day in the Life of a Beauty Consultant (oraclebeautyblog.wordpress.com)