Retail Holidays and Greeting Card Holidays

I truly dislike retail and greeting card holidays. To me, a retail holiday is one of those holidays where it’s uncouth not to buy something. Heaven forbid if you don’t send your mother a card on Mother’s Day or give your honey a heart shaped box full of chocolate on Valentine’s Day.

Now, let’s not get confused between a retail holiday, and a greeting card holiday. Both can go hand in hand, but they’re not always mutually inclusive. Greeting card holidays include Grandparents Day, Secretary’s Day, Boss’s Day, etc… Greeting card holidays have gotten as excessive as those ribbons people have on the back of their cars. Just like there is a ribbon for virtually every disease, there is a greeting card for virtually every holiday imaginable. To top it off, greeting card holidays have the luxury of providing guilt trips. “What if I’m the only one who didn’t get my boss something?”

On the other half of the coin, there are retail holidays. Some retail holidays started out respectful. For example, Mother’s Day starting off as a day to stop and acknowledge how great your mother is. Now it has turned into this retail monstrosity. Just try seeing what happens if you don’t buy your mother anything on mother’s day. Easter used to be about remembering Jesus’ death and resurrection. Now it is about boiled eggs, candy, Easter baskets, and Sunday dresses. Halloween used to be about dressing up and going from house to house asking for candy. Now it’s about hundred dollar costumes, endless decorations, rows of bagged candy, and hundreds of accessories.

Christmas is one of those unfortunate holidays that has turned into a retail holiday. Christmas used to be about honoring Christ’s birth and setting a day aside for remembrance. Now it’s about giving expensive gifts to everyone you know, decorating a tree, changing everything in the house to a red and green color scheme, and stuffing your face.

Now I don’t dislike Christmas or Valentine’s Day per se. I dislike the retail aspect because they distort the true meaning of the holiday. For example, I would really loathe Martin Luther King Jr. Day if instead of remembering the greatest man of black civil rights, we were asked to buy a card and present and give it to a person of a different race (retailers, don’t get any ideas).

Christmas used to be about remembering and honoring Christ’s birth. Let us keep it like that. When giving gifts to each other, remember that it all started when the Wise Men showered baby Jesus in gifts. The star on top of your tree represents the star the Wise Men followed to find Jesus.

Remember these things. Holidays shouldn’t be about running to the store. Holidays should be about running to God and each other.


  1. I agree wholeheartedly. As my way of trying to “rage against the machine”, I just try to give and share my love throughout the year and downplay these “retail” holidays.

    It seems to work with most.

  2. The real story behind the holiday has been relegated to the background of shopping and decorating. Thanks for reminding us to put things in perspective

  3. Maybe the best way to handle the problem is to get over the formality and to turn the page as efficiently as possible.

    I think we humans, like to play roles and share myths, even if everyone knows for a fact the said myth is a myth indeed.

    A few years ago someone suggested me to read the first Harry Potter. I answered that it had been years I had read some fiction, because I don’t have time for that. After the person insisted a few times, I started to read and wasn’t able to get out of it until it was finished.

    I’ve since read all of the Harry Potter.

    And I can tell you why: in these books, I’ve found all the wishes I have forgotten I had as a child because of social conditioning.

    Maybe not all, but many.

    There’s a relation between wishes and values and it’s interesting to see what values I had when I was a child before adults teach me not to wish for things that were impossible.

    What’s possible and what’s impossible is a matter of discussion, but discussion is sometimes not even possible between children and adults.

  4. I believe what ever you do decide to get that person for that certain occasion it should be special and meaningful.

    If it’s for Christmas I try to find out what brings joy to that individual first and if it’s in my budget, yes I’ll get it for them.

    If it’s Valentine’s Day and it’s my girlfriend I will go all out for her for the simple reason I truly Love her and I want that joy she’ll receive from whatever I get her.

    Happy Valentine’s Day everybody!!!!!!!!!

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