They hate Christmas and so should you

ReAnne Utemark

Christmas shopping is normally a good time. For many, it is fun to shop and it is also a time to reflect upon what matters most. For others, apparently half of the people hired at Topeka retailers, it is the worst time of the year.

This Saturday people bustled around Wanamaker, trying to get where they wanted to go and get what they needed to get. It was busy, crowded and overall, cranky. It seemed like most of the people that I came into contact with were annoyed that I existed, and to top it all off, I wanted to buy that DVD? How dare I? Even one of the little old sample ladies at Sam’s snapped at me.

The holiday season is stressful. Surrounding yourself with family and food takes much more work than it looks like on the Hallmark cards. Additionally, people have to work and be away from their families during the holiday season. This is particularly irksome when a retail worker has to work Christmas Eve because some people just couldn’t bring themselves out earlier to take care of their shopping.

However, Saturday was Dec. 1, a perfectly logical and legitimate time to do one’s Christmas shopping. Yet everywhere I went, I was met with disdain and unsmiling faces. Even the sample ladies at Sam’s had something to say.

Recently I read about a college student in Montana who was arrested for smashing a pie in Santa’s face. I cannot imagine what would motivate anyone to do that. Pieing Santa earns you a place at the top of the naughty list. To top it all off, according to the AP story, the kid then shouted, “What do you think of that, Santa?”


He is a drama student at the University of Montana and will use the clip in an upcoming student film. The article did not state why neither he nor any of his friends could have dressed up as Santa rather than assaulting this poor shopping mall Santa.

As well, it is a time of changing traditions, including incorporating the “green” fad into holiday celebrations. Do not be unforgiving in the acceptance of these new ideas. If an individual wants to get their family energy-efficient light bulbs and use recycled paper to wrap them up in, they should be allowed to do so in peace. Additionally, this is a time of different celebrations of different holidays. If the salesperson says “Happy Holidays” or “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Christmahanukwanzakah,” they are trying to remember the holidays, whatever you personally celebrate. They are not necessarily trying to offend you.

It is important to remember civility during this time that makes people rude. Everyone is working hard and trying to make the most out of the holiday season. It is not only the retailers that have to smile nicely for the customer, but also the customer who has to be polite to the retailer. Do not throw elbows, that Wii is not that important. Do not throw spiteful words to someone who cuts you off with a cart.

Whatever you celebrate, get ready for the celebrations with kindness. As cliché as it sounds, a smile goes a long way. If nothing else, you can do your shopping online.