Let’s get it over with I say.
The sooner the Christmas retail serpent’s ravening fangs make contact with its own juicy tail and we have a year-round ever more tightly constricting festive embrace the better.
We can then accept the situation and move on – like we’ve accepted post office closures and the new KitKat wrapper and Winnie-the-Pooh’s American accent and a thousand other small worsenings that powerful people have decided we deserve.
Speaking as a miserable sod I look forward to it.
Instead of lamenting a trend we can settle down into patronising younger people with anecdotes about how great it was when there were great stretches of the year when you genuinely couldn’t buy lametta (except on the internet).
A major reason this seasonal department is such a PR hit is that Christmas is more interesting when it’s incongruous.
Hence the perennial popularity of those news stories about local oddballs who never take their decorations down and eat turkey with all the trimmings 365 times a year.
Set against a background of everyday life we can see Christmas’s strangeness more clearly: the curious food – the weird music – the garish interior design and the baffling proliferation of apparently unlinked symbols: snowmen – reindeer – Middle Eastern shepherds – parcels – stars – bells – bearded geriatrics dressed in red – triangular trees – babies and holly.
Christmas is like our whole culture putting on a disguise – different customs – music – cuisine – symbolism – way of life.
If aliens observed us throughout December they might think they’d got a handle on what we’re like but then suddenly it would all change.
‘What’s happened to the jingly – present-giving – arguing – snow-obsessed over-eaters?’ they’d ask in January.