For a kid, this picture amounts to no less than heaven itself. For an adult, there’s two ways to look at it, both of which occured to me as I snapped this picture in the garden center at the local WallyWorld. First I thought, “There is so much joy sitting there, neatly lined up, ready to be bought and hidden away until Christmas morning.” My second thought was, “Wow, Walmart’s gonna make so much money selling those to people who’re going to have to take out title loans to afford Christmas this year. How crass and disgusting. Commercialism is the death of the true Chrsitmas spirit.”
Both of these thoughts are true and both have some value. Yes, the joy of a child receiving a present on Christmas morning is a beautiful thing, just as the intrusive, exhausting commercialism of the season is an ugly thing. But I’ve decided that in order to preserve my enjoyment of the season, I am going to ignore the whole “free-trade capitalism is evil.” Capitalism gave us Rudolph. Capitalism gave us Santa Claus as we know him (a morbidly obese old man who loves Coca-Cola). It’s a reality which is not going away any time soon and what conscientious consumers can do is simply choose not to go nuts on the shopping and do a percentage of your gifts and decorations homemade.*
*Please don’t make the bicycle one of your homemade gifts. It probably won’t be up to ASME safety standards. No offense.