Who would of thought that you could put the word “phony” and “commercialism” together in the same phrase….Well, it did not take me long to come up with this title when I was thinking about this topic from the events that are taking place this time every year. You see, I work in the retail sector. Retail, as in directly dealing with produce and products selling them to costumers alike. However, I have a job that only allows me to deal with the transport business (receiving) and the custom is another world away. But, every aspect of my 40 hours per week world, revolves around the customer whether I see them or not.
Why the word phony? Simple, the biggest day of year that will make or break any retailer in the Western world is coming up soon. The Christmas season is the “make all, break all” time of the year that most retailer’s will focus up to 70% of energy for this time period. If sale suck, they may loose all their profits for the entire year. If the consumer buys and spends like no other year before, then retailer’s can claim huge profits.
So, what are we selling I ask? Where I work, and I can’t say the name of the cooperation, based on my rigid policy on these sorts of things, we are flooding our stores with Christmas items like I never seen before. We sell every thing from food, cigarettes to clothing and hardware, yet this time of year, Christmas products make up 40% of our volume. Last year, out of profits just shy of 1 billion dollars, it was explain to me that 55% of that amount came from the month of December! Wow, try and wrap your head around that number?
So, I see that the commercialism of Christmas is well at hand and consumers do not think twice about spending their hard earned money just for this season event.
I cannot judge whether Christmas and commercialism is bad or good, but I can say that I do not agree with the over spending and huge debts generated by this event. I cannot help but think that the general principals of Christmas have gone, or are lost by this material driven madness. Oh sure, I keeps employed, but to what avail? When January comes upon us, we are dead, slow, laying off employee by the hundreds. What was the point of all this as we start to think about paying off all out credit cards and returning those gifts we really didn’t want.
As for my part in all this, I don’t make any effort to celebrate the Christmas event. I never had a tree in my living room, nor have I gone out spent gobs of money buying gifts. Granted, my philosophy reflex upon the children, as I believe that the event is really for them. I will give small gifts for the children within my family. For me, that is the season spirit, no the checkout isle in some big box store with things that I could never really afforded. Being that I have none of my own, I see no reason to go gun-hoe for myself.