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Camurati: Slow Down! Thanksgiving Still Comes First

While running errands with a friend yesterday, I stayed in the warm car while she ran into a convenience store. That’s when I heard it — Christmas carols.
In the middle of November.
IMG_4542For the rest of the day, I looked around Oxford at the decorations I saw, and more often than not, they were red and green, not orange and brown.
Thanksgiving is an American fixture. We, as a nation, gather together and give thanks for everything that happened in the past year and everything that will happen during the next. We gather with family, eat a lot of turkey and watch too much football.
Christmas is, as the title suggests, a Christian holiday celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ. Another family gathering occurs just a month after all the turkey, and we give gifts, sing songs and eat some more.
But notice I said one month LATER, not two weeks prior.
Walking around the Square the week of Halloween, I saw one shop putting up their Christmas tree after hours. Now, the Square is covered with green tinsel and wreaths, and many houses have similar décor on their doors. My apartment complex office even joined in the extra early
FullSizeRenderI made a friend last year in McComb, and that friend became my first Jewish friend. As a graduate of Memphis Catholic schools, I wasn’t exposed to Judaism outside of our theology classes. And until last year, I didn’t realize that Christmas has begun to monopolize way more of the year than it did when I was a kid.
I never enjoyed Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, but my mother watches it religiously. At the end of the parade, every year, Santa Claus appears, and Christmas is officially in season.
Radio stations would jump on Christmas tunes and Elvis Presley’s “Blue Christmas” as soon as Thanksgiving night, but never before.
Now, all you need is temperatures below 50 degrees, and I’m hearing “Merry Christmas!” and seeing inflatable Rudolphs.
IMG_4535Some Oxonians haven’t given up on Tom the Turkey and the holiday celebrating a friendly dinner between the British settlers and Native Americans, but most people have jumped straight from Halloween (or earlier) right into Winter Wonderland.
Winter doesn’t even start until Dec. 21, no matter how cold it is and how much freezing rain we deal with, but I digress.
The holiday season is a long stretch from Halloween to Valentine’s Day, and each holiday deserves its moment in the spotlight. Christmas will come, it always does, and part of the excitement of the day is the waiting all year until Christmas morning.
Don’t take away the anticipation. Give me my Thanksgiving, and I’ll start on Christmas right after my favorite holiday — the Egg Bowl.
Amelia Camurati is editor-in-chief of HottyToddy.com and loves all holidays. She can be reached at amelia.camurati@hottytoddy.com.

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