I hate December 26.


They start as early as September. The decorations begin amassing before October. And the hoary holiday carols and pop tunes pipe through the airwaves pretty much non-stop starting Thanksgiving night. If not for Halloween, we’d be inundated with wall-to-wall Christmas commercialism for 3 solid months.

If it seems I’m complaining — I’m not, really. Although it always starts before I’m ready, I do welcome the long Christmas season each year. From the madness of Black Friday doorbusters to the excitement of kids’ anticipation to the inevitable hearing of my least favorite holiday song to the sweetness of the actual Christmas story, I’ve learned to embrace it all — if at an arm’s length just for sanity’s sake.

What I really do hate, though, is the sudden stop afterward.

Perhaps it’s because I don’t drink and breathe Christmas for all those weeks I alluded to above. But I’m not Christmas’d out by Christmas night. Indeed, I’m not ready for it to all end.

I’m not ready for stations that have been playing Christmas tunes 24/7 to just up and quit around 5 pm on Dec. 25.

There’s a good reason for it, too. The actual Christmas story, that we in the faith recall during this Advent season? Most of it happened after December 25. (Or whenever…we know it didn’t happen in December, all right? Shut up. 🙂 )

  • The shepherds probably got the manger well after the birth, maybe not even the same day.
  • The wise men, according to many bible scholars, may not have presented their gifts to the young King until he was two years old.

Point being: Christmas is the beginning, not the end.

Back in the early ’90s after college, I took a seasonal job at Toys ‘R’ Us. One of the things I loved about that job was the constant Christmas music and the fact that they kept playing it up into the new year. “TRU” knew, as I did even then, that the end of Christmas Day wasn’t the end of it all.


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