EDITORIAL – We’re killing ourselves with Christmas, and media are to blame

Way too much Christmas music. (Image:

An editorial by Mel Rothenburger.

IF I HAVE to listen to one more Christmas song, or watch one more made-for-TV Christmas movie, it’ll be one too many.

I understand the commercialization of Christmas, and I’m OK with it — everybody’s gotta make a buck. But my real issue is with the media.

I know there’s magic in the air and we should be decking the halls and roasting chestnuts. But, for crying out loud, how many more movies do we need about an impossibly attractive big-city upcoming executive who gets sent to her home town to shut down the factory and put everybody out of work, but discovers true love with her also impossibly attractive high-school sweetheart who stayed behind to become the town handy man, and… well, I won’t spoil the ending for you.

And the music. Week after week, we can’t turn on the car radio without hearing wall-to-wall Christmas music. There’s no escaping it. It’s on the streets; it’s in every store.

Imagine what the poor store employees go through, listening to all that Christmas music day after day after day.

Researchers have found that retail employees are prone to depression from the constant repetition of music and lyrics about this most wonderful time of the year.

We’re killing ourselves with Christmas. It oozes from our every pore.

We used to greet each other with “Merry Christmas!” Now the traditional greeting is “Got your shopping done?”

We get Canada Day wrapped up in about 12 hours. The Christmas season is now longer than the gestation period of an elephant. The official term for it is “Christmas creep.”

A lot of good is done at Christmas, but if the media would simply run Christmas advertising and leave the rest of it for later, and stores would slow down on the music, everybody’s stress level would drop. Couldn’t they… you know, can the Christmas content for six or seven weeks while we quietly do our shopping, and then, around Dec. 1, go for the gusto?

Just an idea. See you at the Boxing Week sales.

I’m Mel Rothenburger, the Armchair Mayor.

Mel Rothenburger’s Armchair Mayor editorials appear twice daily Mondays through Thursdays on CFJC- TV. His Armchair Mayor column is published Saturdays on and CFJC Today. Contact him at

About Mel Rothenburger (6313 Articles) is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

6 Comments on EDITORIAL – We’re killing ourselves with Christmas, and media are to blame

  1. Cindy Ross Friedman // December 23, 2017 at 1:36 PM // Reply

    I really liked this article and the Fruitloops one as well. You really nailed the issues in a funny way in both, I have been subject to watching Christmas movies with my Mom in Penticton, and your short analysis of them is bang on. Also in every single one:
    — a sad widower with a young child
    — Christmas tree shopping
    — Christmas tree decorating
    — ice skating
    — Going for hot chocolate
    — Giggles and obvious attraction that is denied, usually for no believable reason
    — Making a gingerbread house and/or baking/decorating cookies
    — A big misunderstanding about 20 min, before the movie ends
    — a resolution about 3 min, before the movie ends, and the characters share their first kiss. The End,

    • Mel Rothenburger // December 23, 2017 at 9:11 PM // Reply

      And the resolution of the crisis is announced on Christmas eve at the town square, just as the snow begins to fall, and everyone breaks into a verse or two of Silent Night.

  2. Thank you Mel, I couldn’t agree more! For some reason I am feeling deluged by the length and intensity of “ the campaign” . While the sincere bits…Christmas concerts, charity drives, church celebrations, fun decorating, a glass of wine with friends are there, they are eclipsed by overkill of retailing and media. My senses feel violated, and my enthusiasm for the holiday is vastly dampened! After reading your article, I feel validated and assured I am not The Grinch. Let’s collectively do what we can to turn the volume down! Wishing you and yours a Merry Christmas, Mel, celebrating with whatever activities and traditions “ turn your crank”. Blessings, Janis Ottem

  3. Mel; Sorry,it,s me again.Your last 3 editorials were actually 100 percent right on. Unusual. This last one is funny.
    My contribution to shoppers, and Christians at Costco is pulling any of the plugs I can at Christmas which seems to start in October.

  4. Maybe it’s time we got with the 21st century with commercialism & practicality.
    For those who still want to celebrate the faith-based Christmas (better put as the birth of Christ), let’s keep the date as December 25th or choose one that is historically more accurate.
    For the folks who want to travel, party, drink, overspend, over eat, play tinny music for hours on end in the malls etc. etc. etc., why not be practical and choose an entirely separate date when the roads are not covered with ice & snow and people don’t get stranded by the weather?
    It’s easy enough to do. Just do it.

    Merry Christmas, Mel.

  5. I wonder if you can still choose to just not pay attention to all of THAT!
    Beside the Christmas concert at the schools and the Canadian Pacific Holiday Train what else would you want or care to take in this time of the year?
    But the traffic…that’s painful!

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