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The Christmas Marketing Season has Begun!


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Please note the date: Saturday October 13 for this is the opening of the Christmas preparation season for 2012. Archeologists and cultural historians will be grateful to me in years hence when they get their government grants and write their learned tomes about the whys and wherefores of Christmas in this our particular era. Yes, I say they will be glad to have each salient fact, observation and deduction gathered by yours truly and herewith shared with the world.

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The Christmas Marketing Season has Begun!

  1. 1. The Christmas Marketing Season has Begun!
  2. 2. Preface / Introduction@~~~>The LAST Time I Made This OFFER I was BURIED in calls so I am limiting this to theNEXT 5 PEOPLE ONLY CALL ME NOW - dont miss out! CALL ME NOW for your FREEInternet marketing consultation. $100 value. Let an expert show you RIGHT NOW how to profitonline every single day without leaving home. CALL ME -- Liz English -- NOW, (315) 668-1591.LIVE 24/7/365.
  3. 3. Table of Contents1. The moans, groans, complaints and pontifications have begun as the Christmas marketing seasonof 2011 commences. Which side are you on?2. God rest you merry, gentlemen. At my home that means preparing everything for the visit of thePrince of Peace. Its a true labor of love.
  4. 4. The Christmas Marketing Season has Begun!The moans, groans, complaints and pontifications havebegun as the Christmas marketing season of 2011commences. Which side are you on?By Dr. Jeffrey LantAuthors program note. Every year, it seems, the opening date for Christmas marketing creepsforward, adding days, not just hours, to the already lengthy selling season. This year my cadre ofChristmas watchers reported seasonal catalog and store sightings as early as Labor Day, September8 . But you can count on this: as people worldwide read this article, they will surely report evenearlier sightings. This happens every year... and as it does one of the interminable debates of ourtimes reignites: when is this much too much Christmas?Ask this query in a crowded room and, hey presto, there will be pandemonium, mayhem, andstrident calls for the public lynching of the people who so tamper with and wantonly extend the mostimportant and revered holiday of the year. Christmas creep is here... and you have an opinion on thismatter; Im sure of that. Everybody does.Christmas is the promised land -- for merchants everywhere. Thats the problem.Christmas purists, and their number is legion, never tire of beating up the merchants who are, theyaver, at the bottom of Christmas creep. From this moment of the year forward, a large percentage ofAmericans will get up on any soap box to hand and excoriate, insult, belittle and besmirch peoplewho earlier in the year they knew and attested to be good, hard-working, service-providing,tax-paying citizens. But where Christmas creep is the issue, truth and justice are early casualties.People will creep... its as American as apple pie.Know any folks from California? Or Oklahoma? I do. They are some of the nicest people youll evermeet. They are also the descendants of creepers.Take California for instance. There a grand gentleman named John Augustus Sutter was peacefullyminding his own business when James W. Marshall on January 24, 1848 discovered gold on Suttersland, at Sutters Mill, near Sacramento. The nation didnt say, "Good for you, Mr. Sutter." No way.Instead they took to creeping on to old man Sutters land, a little bit here, a little bit there... until thecreepers had everything and Mr. Sutter had nothing but lawsuits and a footnote in history. A little bitof gold in them thar hills and a whole lot of creeping got us the State of California, and thats a fact.Or consider the folks in Oklahoma. Theyre not called Sooners for nothing. In 1889, the federalgovernment organized the great land rush, whereby folks who wanted land could get it free byracing for it against other land-hungry folks. Problem is, a good many of the wanters couldnt bebothered to wait... and so they crept out early and grabbed the good stuff. Yup, they were creepersand some of the best families of the state started that way, and that, too, is a fact. Creeping pays, andonly a Grinch would disagree.But Grinches proliferate the closer Christmas comes and its insistent, unrelenting messages.Although there have been plenty of Grinches in our history, lives, and culture, the actual characterdebued in the 1957 childrens book by Dr. Seuss, who was by all accounts a Grinch himself. It wastitled "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" and was adopted into a popular television special in 1966.In an instant people with anti-holiday spirit and growly disposition were indelibly tagged aspartisans of that scowling hermit with green fur, red eyes, and boots who lives in an isolated cavenear Whoville. Copyright Elizabeth English - 2012 4 of 10
  5. 5. The Christmas Marketing Season has Begun!Now exuberant Christmas lovers had just what they needed to characterize and lambast the naysayers, "Dont be a Grinch," causing the justly labeled Grinches to writhe and squirm. Just as theydeserve. We all know its fun -- and de rigueur -- to pick on each and every Grinch we know.Its a question of dates.After the fall in 1815 of Napoleon and his gimcrack empire, a peace conference was convened inVienna to divvy up the spoils. Participants included Russia, England, Prussia, Austria and -- drumroll -- the France now ruled again by its Bourbon dynasty and represented by the Prince deTalleyrand. One day Tsar Alexander I of Russia, who always made such a bad impression as herattled on about God and morality, was being particularly insufferable on the matter of how to dividethe Kingdom of Saxony, which had, in his imperial view, stayed loyal to Napoleon a little too long.Its king, he insisted, should be losing half his country, or more.Talleyrand, polished, aristocratic to his manicured fingertips, the ultimate cynic and realist, scannedhis colleagues, each of whom (but the English) had made deals with Bonaparte, and renigged onthem, snapped out that toxic phrase, "That, sire, is a question of dates."And so it is with our Scrooges, our Grinches.The person who wants no Christmas festivities at all, just strict, gloomy adherence to what theysuppose has been ordained and sanctified.... are Scrooges to the people who want the Christmasseason to exist for a day or two, but not more. These, in turn, get dubbed as Grinches by those whowant more... and there are always those who do. And so it goes...... merchants trying (especially nowadays) to make up for one punk month after another, delvingdeeper into the calendar....... thereby fueling yelps of outrage and righteousness from folks who raise the cry of too muchself-seeking commercialism too early...... thereby forcing those who might even agree in theory, to push the adamant seasonal marketingforward and forward again, as an act of mercantile preservation and profit.Each says, "Enough is enough"; each points fingers and mouths frantic imprecations; each postures,preens, pouts, and always acts and speaks as if truth lived in their house and only their house. Sothere!Whoa! The baby at the center of Christmas has indeed been thrown out with the bath water, and thiswill never do. Thus some thoughts of reconciliation, offered humbly and with trepidation.Christmas has had a significant commercial aspect since the three wise men of the Orient, who cameso far and at such inconvenience, approached the manger and offered their expensive presents. Didthey just happen to find such offerings -- gold, frankincense, and myrrh -- in their saddlebags?Doubtful. More likely, they had gone shopping at one of the great bazaars along the way; suchbazaars, blazing with the riches of the rich lands of the East, were the malls of their times... evenunto parking their camels, always malodorous and mean spirited. In such a place, even the mostfastidious desires of the most demanding could be met, including those who shopped for the King ofKings, for whom they employed their most discriminating tastes and ample means, never rushed.Thus, commercialism and Christmas go hand in hand... as they always have.These suggestions will help you cope with and better enjoy this best of all holidays:1) Let every man set his own acceptable level for just the amount of Christmas he desires. A laissezfaire attitude is not just useful, but mandatory. Stop worrying about whether the man next door isasking too much or too little from the holiday and instead concentrate on making yours the best ever. Copyright Elizabeth English - 2012 5 of 10
  6. 6. The Christmas Marketing Season has Begun!2) Leave the merchants alone. They have had a bad year; even if we think they are going over board,let them get on with it without our jeremiads, lamentations and snide remarks. Where would we beat Christmas, after all, without them?3) Remember Henry Ford IIs celebrated line, "Never complain, never explain". Since the veryinception of Christmas the Thought Police have attempted to coerce uniformity. Mr. Ford wasright... you owe it to no one and nobody to adhere; simply believe in your own way and style. As thesong says, "Have yourself a merry little Christmas..."4) Select a few of your favorite Christmas carols and seasonal preferences and load them into youraudio player. Youll be a lot happier when you enter some establishment with music you detest, nomatter how venerable, if you can hear the tunes you particularly like.And one more thing, whether the Christmas you celebrate is long or short, the single day itself, orthe 12 days with five gold rings and lords a-leaping, or something else altogether, remember this: thegift you should most give and be most fortunate to receive is love... it is the only true and essentialelement. All else pales beside it. Copyright Elizabeth English - 2012 6 of 10
  7. 7. The Christmas Marketing Season has Begun!God rest you merry, gentlemen. At my home that meanspreparing everything for the visit of the Prince of Peace. Itsa true labor of love.By Dr. Jeffrey LantAuthors program note. Please note the date: Saturday October 13 for this is the opening of theChristmas preparation season for 2012. Archeologists and cultural historians will be grateful to mein years hence when they get their government grants and write their learned tomes about the whysand wherefores of Christmas in this our particular era. Yes, I say they will be glad to have eachsalient fact, observation and deduction gathered by yours truly and herewith shared with the world.For we are talking about the most joyous event of the Christian year, Christmas, and its preparations,staggering for some, meagre and tardy for others, but all acknowledging that this is and continues tobe an event of significance to each of us.How was October 13 selected as the commencement date for this event? Easy! It was the first daywhen your observant author was assailed by not one but a series of "the Christmas season hascommenced" portents, signs which might easily be dismissed were there but one or even two, butwhich in their concerted numbers make it clear that the great count-down to Christmas, with itstraditions, meanings, songs, poems, foods, displays, sentiments, travels, resolutions, friends,observances has now commenced in earnest and for the next 71days until the day itself your life willbe affected, influenced, shaped and to a greater or lesser extent determined by what our fellowtravelers do or dont do, buy or dont buy, wear, stand in line, decorate... or dont wear, stand in line,or decorate.In other words, because of the birth of a child you may or may not believe was the Son of God yourlife and all its prosaic concerns and tasks will be hi-jacked; weeks of your life will be less yours,significantly influenced and directed by others you dont know, will never meet, but who arenonetheless powers over you, determined you should listen to them... or else.The first portents.The thing about portents, that is a clue to future occurrences, is that they must for maximum impacttake you completely unaware. One moment youre doing such and such a task; considering such andsuch a thing; talking about such and such a topic. Then the portent arrives, preferably delivered byone or more appropriate gods of Olympus, all of whom seem to traffic in the dicey business ofportents, omens, divinations, and auguries. The portent (often obscure and therefore more amusing toits deity deliverer) having arrived, pushes other quotidian topics to the bottom of yourconsciousness, pulling out the rug on what you were focused on a moment ago and substitutingquite a different agenda.Yesterday, October 13 mind, these portents arrived thick and fast; itself a sign that a seismic momenthad arrived; actung! stop what youre doing and pay attention. And unless youre that hapless noodlethe bored and therefore capricious gods have determined to make even more hapless and miserable,you do pay attention. Thus does your life cease to be as much yours as it was just a moment before.The gods know this, but they have kept this insightful observation for their own delectation andbenefit ere now. They wouldnt dream of imparting this intelligence to you; "free will" for humansbeing one of the most potent and popular of their shrewd devices for controlling the not so sapienshomo.Let me make one thing clear, for sharing this with you I shall be persona non grata at Olympustonight, for if mankind knew just how little true freedom their gods have allowed us, there would be Copyright Elizabeth English - 2012 7 of 10
  8. 8. The Christmas Marketing Season has Begun!tonight, for if mankind knew just how little true freedom their gods have allowed us, there would besuch a revolution as has never been even imagined before, much less consummated. And the godswould surely have to make concessions, or they would never regain exalted position and control...and what would their excellencies do then to amuse themselves at our expense?What is your portent saying?Portents must be clear but capable of complete misunderstanding. In other words, when reviewingan event that could be a portent, two reasonably intelligent people must be capable of drawing twodramatically different conclusions, for a portent is not a directive... not a declaration... if it were thegods would be most unhappy... for if their signs could be so easily read by everyone the muddlesbeloved of these ancient deities would cease and the gods who already have to wrestle with thematter that is eternity...would fall into even deeper despair; for they already have too little to do andfar too much time in which to do it. Remember, their irritation, ennui and pique become the basis forour misery. No wonder they dont want us to know.Christmas portents by the hour.The gods realize humans are short sighted, careless, capable of massive confusions andmisunderstandings. Thus, the game becomes determining the precise formula that will give us clues(but not too many) and insight (but not too much). Even the Olympian gods are not born knowingthese things; they must learn. And they do so at our expense, for what are we humans for if not toprovide the wherewithal for their education and expertise? We are just so many lab rats to divinity.Nice work if you can get it.Store sightings, catalogs, email.The first shop in my neighborhood to deck the halls was the smoking shop in Harvard Square. Giventhe fact that teen-age smoking has dropped dramatically; thereby proving that even heedlessadolescents can get the message if we adults have the patience and deliberation to beat them aboutthe head with it.As a result, the revenues at the smoking shop have most probably dropped... whilst theirHarvard-charged rent has undoubtedly done the reverse. It is therefore obvious why they want toweigh in with a cheery seasonable greeting and display. "Give the gift of cancer."Even the most knowledgeable of advertising executives might think twice before taking on thisdaunting account. Still, there they are, hoping that the dwindling number of young smokers willpurchase their diminished life span from them, especially if they can do so in the name of Jesus, whopromised the eternal life the smoking shop is doing so much to curtail. Cool.Catalog temptation (and ease) by mail and the net.Stores like the smoking shop need to lure you into their premises as early as possible beforeChristmas; their continuing survival depends on it. But catalogs live to remind you how difficult andirksome store shopping is in the age of catalogs and net. Simply mentioning the invading hordes, theunending lines, the harassed staff, the parking difficulties is usually enough to tip the scales tocatalog shopping online and off. That persuaded me. As a result the last several years such shoppingconstitutes all my shopping.The problem is the proliferation of mail-order Christmas catalogs, especially after you become aproven buyer. Then you may expect to hear from each catalog at least 3-4 times before their lastfrenzied promotion, hitting about December 15. All prophesy consumer distress if you fail to ACTNOW, visit their website and ORDER! Copyright Elizabeth English - 2012 8 of 10
  9. 9. The Christmas Marketing Season has Begun!But here the retail stores re-emerge as they reap the considerable advantages deriving fromprocrastinators like you. At this point you will most assuredly wish you had heeded their Octoberwarning. You will pledge to do better next year. You wont, of course. And so youll keep your nameon every list; a portent of things to come, especially purchases youre sure to make. They know that,even if you dont.Polishing the silver.In my house there is one certain activity that indicates the coming of Christmas. That is polishing thesilver. It is a very time-consuming task, taking a couple of days. Mercedes Joseph, so giving andwarm in all her aspects, will take these traits and leave the silver burnished into eye-poppingradiance. Its a significant part of our invitation to the Prince of Peace, an invitation that will see usclambering up step ladders to clean the chandeliers in all the rooms to ensure that all is brilliant andevery facet sparkles. So that there is not a single molecule of tracked in dirt or bunched carpet. Wework hard to make it perfect; we work early and late to make it perfect... and we do it all because ofthe advent of this harbinger of our salvation; because we will do it, not because anyone tells us whatto do or oversees our efforts, evaluating what we do.We do it, because this is Christmas and the greatest gift we give is our voluntary adherence and abelief that starts in our hearts and has no ending whatsoever.That is why October 13, I awoke to the strains of my favorite carol running through my head, "Godrest you merry, gentlemen/Let nothing you dismay", first released in 1760. In an instant I find BingCrosbys 1945 version; then in a search engine one other version after another, including a renditionby "Barenaked Ladies" (2004). Only the very young can find the sniggering humor in suchsophomoric nomenclature, but today I dont care.For you see, every off key note I sing proves that I have become a portent myself of the great eventen route "For Jesus Christ our Savior/Was born upon this Day", and we rejoice in the Good Newspassed from me and mine, to you and yours, to a burdened world which needs "tidings of comfortand joy, comfort and joy", the true meaning of Christmas and why we gentlemen and gentlewomenrest merry and shall remain so long past the day and season itself. Copyright Elizabeth English - 2012 9 of 10
  10. 10. The Christmas Marketing Season has Begun!ResourceAbout the Author Harvard-educated Dr. Jeffrey Lant is CEO of Worldprofit, Inc., providing a widerange of online services for small and-home based businesses.Republished with authors permission by Elizabeth English Copyright Elizabeth English - 2012 10 of 10