I have noticed this Christmas season that there are more “scrooges” than ever out there wandering about, hating all things that represent the goodness of Christmas. My heart reaches out to these people, wanting to wish them the feeling of wonderment that accompanies my heart at this magical time of year. However, I am not willing to risk being bombarded by curses and the possible violent activity that some of these people seem capable of dishing out, so I pass by with a silent wish that the magic of Christmas will somehow find them.
So to all of you, I bring tips to deal with the grumpiness that inevitably seems to force its way into our hearts and minds when we go shopping or simply want to get to work on time and are confronted with the miseries of the season. This is the safest way to have a laugh, warm up your chilling spirit, and let some of the hassles of the Christmas season roll of your back; all without me sacrificing my body to any cruel rituals anyone saves for the overly cheerful people during this season. Even if you don’t do some of these things to save yourself from the grip of the scrooge, be nice and do it for the others who want to enjoy their time out and about.
My first tip is to please leave your children at home whenever possible. Not only will you be able to get what you need without risking their seeing it, but other people will truly appreciate it as well. My sister and I went shopping on Black Friday this year and I was shocked to see a woman with her two small children standing in the line at Kohl’s. The children were of course having a melt down and who could blame them. We stood in that line for a solid hour before reaching the check out and we were bored out of our minds, I can’t imagine what a child would be going through. Tempers normally start to flair when children have meltdowns and there is nowhere to go to get away from their screaming. Some rude person always says (loud enough for the parents to hear of course) “Please shut that kid up!” The parents then get defensive and the rudeness spreads throughout. Do yourself and everyone else a favor and shop online if you are unable to get a sitter. Or at least bring something for your children to entertain themselves with so others don’t have to wait an hour to get to the milk isle because your child is jumping from square to square on the floors to avoid cracks and the inevitable breaking of your back.
My next tip is to leave all potential weapons at home. No matter how cheerful, upbeat, and in love with the Christmas season you are, everyone gets pushed past their limit at one point or another. You are far less likely to stab the woman who told you to “f-off” because you asked to get through with your nail file if you don’t have one on you.
Tip number three is to kill them with kindness. Your mother always told you that you get more bees with honey than vinegar, and it’s true. Not only will you avoid potential outburst from other people, you won’t damper your own spirit. Next time you overhear the person behind you complaining about your cart full of items, or you get shoved aside so someone can grab the item you are going for, put a huge grin on your face and say loudly “You have a very Merry Christmas!”
Next, keep a comical or spiritual book (or other reading material) in your car at all times. Christmas season means thralls of traffic and accidents everywhere. Your 5 minute drive to work will now take you 20. So while you are waiting for the 6th time to get through that green light you can lift your spirit (and hopefully not the finger to other drivers) with some uplifting or at least funny words. Everyone knows that laughter is the best medicine, but “laughing it off” is harder said then done, so be prepared!
Lastly, forget about buying that perfect present if it is the hottest thing right now. I will admit that one of my favorite things about this season is going shopping for the perfect present for someone. I do know that I would not want to receive a present; no matter how perfect it was, if it required you to poke out two eyes, run an elderly person over, and threaten a woman’s unborn child though. Find something else and be glad you won’t run the risk of ending up on the front page of tomorrow’s newspaper.