How Working Retail Ruined Christmas Music For Me

Growing up, come the day after Thanksgiving, I would LOVE to play Christmas music all day long. Mariah Carey’s Merry Christmas album was the first I ever owned. I have fond memories of receiving a Walkman (for those of you who don’t know what THAT is: it’s an ipod that required a cassette tape to play music) for Christmas and tuning it to a local station that played Christmas music until December 26th, just so I could soak in the final moments of the tunes for the year. In grade school, my mom and I would bake all day long making plates of goodies for our friends and neighbors with Christmas music in the background. Christmas music used to mean as much to me as wrapping presents do, as a part of the holiday and its magic. It gave me that warm and fuzzy feeling.

I’ve had two very retail-specific jobs throughout my working life. I worked at a video store (may it rest in peace) for about two and a half years, and a large department store chain for two years, both while attending college. Christmas time at the video store was not that bad. Even though we sold movies and games, most people would just come in to rent. The store never took part in any Black Friday deals either, just the typical sales for used items. The video store also never played music over an intercom or anything like that. There were several TV’s placed throughout the store that would play movie trailers, the occasional music video, and some commercials. There was only ONE Christmas song that I can ever remember being played while I worked there. “Little Saint Nick” by The Beach Boys was on a Coca-Cola commercial. A co-worker and I timed it, and we found that the commercial would play every twelve minutes. You can think that those Coca-Cola bears are cute and that the song is great, but you try listening to that every twelve minutes during an eight hour shift. That’s FORTY TIMES a day!

Working at the large department store, there were a lot more Christmas songs played, but not enough (meaning, too many of the same ones!). In fact, working there ruined A LOT of songs for me, to be honest. They like to play maybe twenty songs at any given time and play them over and over and over. Sometimes they change a song here and again. I stopped working there in 2010 and they are STILL playing some songs that played when I worked there. BUT That’s beside the point. Said department store started playing Christmas music in OCTOBER. Their Christmas section with ornaments and decorations is put up in October. THEY give a new meaning to their Early Bird Specials. Three months, and two months before you want to hear Christmas music is too much, as well.

Don’t get me wrong, Christmas music has not been entirely ruined as a whole. There are a few songs here and there that I do not mind. There is only one album that has been forever preserved for me, that I will sing songs from, and LOVE with all my heart. You might laugh at me so prepare yourself:

(image from Wikipedia)

Judge me, it’s ok. I’ve already outed myself as a forever Spice Girls fan (read my post about Girl Power! here). Surprise, Surprise, I appreciate some music by Hanson too. I was eleven when this album came out, and very much in love with Hanson. Say what you will, but I believe this trio to be extremely talented. A “boy band” that plays their own instruments is almost unheard of (stereotypical boy band, that is). They perform eleven Christmas songs; some very traditional songs, and even three which they wrote. “Everybody knows the Claus” and “What Christmas Means to Me” are my favorite, but really, they’re all magical. OKAY, NOT “Little Saint Nick” but that’s for above said reason.

If you are a lover of Christmas music (or not, like me!), I highly suggest you give this album a try to help you get into the spirit! If you download Spotify onto your computer (it’s free for your computer, it does cost for mobile devices) you can listen to the entire album in its entirety FOR FREE! It’s the Christmas album that this Anti-Christmas Music person gives a free pass!

Happy Holidays everyone! Eleven FULL days until Christmas, and Eighteen days of free eating before those New Year’s resolutions!


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