Home / Christmas Songs on the Radio on Veteran’s Day – Stop the Insanity!

Christmas Songs on the Radio on Veteran’s Day – Stop the Insanity!

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I heard my first Christmas song of the season yesterday morning on the radio. Every year I always mark that occasion as a reminder that I have lots of things to get done, but then I realized that this was Veteran’s Day. Christmas music on Veteran’s Day? There is something wrong with this picture to be sure.

In recent years radio stations here in New York have been going with an “all Christmas music” format, usually starting around Thanksgiving. The theory goes that once the turkey, stuffing, and pumpkin pie have been ingested, that people are ready for Black Friday (dubbed by retailers as the day after Thanksgiving) to start their Christmas shopping. Ostensibly, people want to get into their cars and hear the songs on the radio or as they walk around the mall. I have come to accept that over time, but now this is getting ridiculous.

It is bad enough that Christmas decorations have been in the stores since late September. It is a little unsettling to see Halloween decorations set up right next to Christmas ones. I don’t know about you, but Santa and Frosty the Snowman just don’t go with witches, skeletons, and jack-o-lanterns. Yes, it perturbs me to see this, but it also is difficult when you have a little kid with you. What messages are being sent into a three year old’s brain when he sees these things?

This meshing of holidays, not to mention the almost complete disregard for Thanksgiving as its own holiday, has been bothersome for a long time to me. Trying to get any Thanksgiving decorations is always a problem. Stuck between the retailers’ dream holidays of Halloween and Christmas, the most you can sometimes find is a pilgrim boy or girl if you’re lucky.

I guess we cannot blame retailers who see this as their biggest time of the year, but it is vexing. So when I am sitting on a line waiting for gas and going around the radio channels, I don’t like hearing that Christmas music so early. As I heard the lyrics, “It’s that time of year/when the world falls in love….” I felt like screaming, “No, it’s not that time of year yet!”

So I am officially bypassing 103.1 FM until after Thanksgiving. I am sure some other stations may start ramming Christmas songs down our throats soon. Maybe I am sounding a bit like Scrooge here, but I want the season to actually be in season. For me that means at least waiting until after Thanksgiving to decorate for Christmas and play the music. Even then, by the time we actually get to Christmas Eve, I have heard “Holly, Jolly Christmas” enough times to make my head explode. How’s that for getting into the Christmas spirit? It gets me thinking that Scrooge may have had a point after all. Bah, humbug indeed!

Photo Credit: dreamstime.com

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About Victor Lana

Victor Lana's stories, articles, and poems have been published in literary magazines and online. His books 'A Death in Prague' (2002), 'Move' (2003), 'The Savage Quiet September Sun: A Collection of 9/11 Stories' (2005), and 'Like a Passing Shadow' (2009) are available in print, online, and as e-books. His latest books 'If the Fates Allow: New York Christmas Stories,' 'Garden of Ghosts,' and 'Flashes in the Pan' are available exclusively on Amazon. He has won the National Arts Club Award for Poetry, but has concentrated on writing mostly fiction and non-fiction prose in recent years. He has worked as a faculty advisor to school literary magazines and enjoys the creative process as a writer, editor, and collaborator. He has been with 'Blogcritics Magazine' since July 2005 and has written well over 500 articles; previously co-head sports editor, he now is a Culture and Society editor. Having traveled extensively, Victor has visited six continents and intends to get to Antarctica someday where he figures a few ideas for new stories await him.
  • Some years ago, during the run-up to Christmas, I worked a temporary assignment in an office with a woman who insisted on listening to the local “soft rock” station all day long. This was bad enough, but lamentably, the station had an “all Christmas, all the time” policy beginning immediately after Thanksgiving. Exacerbating this was that they only had about 12 Christmas songs on their playlist, which repeated endlessly at intervals of about 90 minutes.

    The upshot of this was that after a few weeks I was wondering (a) whether any Nazi concentration camp gas chambers were still in working order, and (b) if they were, whether there might be a case for shepherding Burl Ives, the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Bobby Helms, Mannheim Steamroller, Bruce Springsteen and all the other serial offenders into them, locking the door and tossing the Zyklon-B down the chimney.

    I was frankly thankful when the assignment ended a couple of weeks before the holiday and I could stop having genocidal thoughts about it.

    And to be fair, there are a few songs out there on the subject of military service members being absent during the holiday season – “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” is one such – so perhaps playing Christmas songs on Veterans’ Day isn’t so inappropriate after all.

  • Ronnie Lankford, Jr.

    I enjoyed the article. I do find it interesting that despite the fact that most everyone complains about early Christmas music, the stores and radio stations start playing it early anyway. Something–marketing surveys–must say that it’s effective. Kind of like negative campaign advertising: no one likes it, but apparently it works.