Don’t Hate – Christmas Shopping
Fir ‘n Frost, by Flickr user waferboard. Used under a Creative Commons license.

Nine years ago, while I was working an office job and would spend my mandatory lunch hours at the mall to kill time, I made a New Year’s Resolution. It went like this:

I will complete all of my Christmas shopping every year before December 1st so that I can be one less body at the mall, so that I can avoid being annoyed by too many people moving too quickly and too angrily, and so that I can rest and relax and spend the holiday season being Christmassy and not Grinchy. If I succeed? Spa day for me in December.

For nine years, I have stuck to this resolution. It’s true. I don’t go in the mall in December for Christmas-related shopping. I sometimes have to go to the mall for non-Christmas related stuff, like going to the dentist or getting toilet paper from London Drugs, but the fact is that I do not go in the mall after November 30. I have been a retail employee in a mall setting, and have experienced Christmas music October 30. I do not want to contribute to making the mall a horrific display of terrible human traits.

The worst job I ever had was in 1993 – I got a temporary part time job at a mall in Nanaimo. My job was as a mall greeter. I wore a white button down shirt and black pants, and was assigned a red velvet vest and bow tie. I opened doors for people, wished them Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays, and offered to carry packages to their car. Many people were delighted that the mall was offering “greeters” as a service, especially the seniors. But many, many, many more people would curse at me, tell me my job was a waste of money on behalf of the mall, suggest I was “trying to sell something”, or sneer back at me. Many people would ignore me, and a few would even change their path when they saw me open the door so that they would open a different door and avoid an exchange with me.  If ever there was a job to show you how Christmas’ true meaning and spirit had been forgotten, this was it.

So, don’t hate. But yeah. Done and wrapped, baby.

Wrapped and ready. Don't even have a tree to put them under yet.
Wrapped and ready. Don’t even have a tree to put them under yet.


8 years ago