I was standing in a packed aisle of a department store; wildly perusing unoccupied shelves for the next gift on my list. The delirium of the crowded store pushed up against my senses, creating a dizzying effect akin to inebriation. The music of the season plowed through the PA system above as it began to water-board me into submission. I was in a frosted white, winter-fuck me-wonderland! Christmas music is ok when it’s played on Christmas Eve, Christmas day, maybe even a week before Christmas; and only in moderation. I’m okay with those terms. But there are some nut jobs out there who will blast that shit from November till the end of December.
Six years ago, while working in a small office, my supervisor would bring in Christmas CDs by mid-November and crank out Christmas chanteys till our ears bled eggnog. So now, when December rolls around, I manage my PTSD by maintaining a safe distance from retail stores, malls, flea markets, bodegas.
This year, “I had to be different,” I thought as I retracted myself from a thousand yard stare and grumbled at having waited till Christmas Eve to finish buying Christmas gifts. And as I stood squeezing out annoyance with a Nerf football; something magical happened. The opening bars of my savior began to cram its melody over the store PA. THE GREATEST CHRISTMAS FUCK YOU SONG EVER WRITTEN!
The annoyed voice of a twenty-something hipster moaned from the next aisle over. My Personal Jesus had delivered the goods once again, successfully pissing off John Q. Public. Glancing across the aisles, as people turned their noses up in hoity disgust, I relished in the itchy irritation of embarrassment instigated by this song. Restraining my absurd smile, I walked up to a register, grabbed a handfull of gift cards and walked out the sliding doors; leaving the hysteria of the holiday behind.