'Tis the Season?

The heat of the 2020 election may have died down, but now arises a debate perhaps equally as divisive. The question is: when it is acceptable to start listening to Christmas music? Many believe the time arrives once the clock strikes midnight on November 1st, while others adamantly wait until all of the turkey, stuffing, and pumpkin pie has been cleared from their plates on Thanksgiving. While I hold an opinion on this hot-button issue, let me instead present both sides and let you decide for yourself.


Halloween is over, let the holiday cheer begin:

Once the costumes have been folded away and you have recovered from the candy-induced coma, some people believe it is time to defrost Mariah Carey and Michael Bublé. They argue that the holiday spirit is so infectious—why would you wait to enjoy it? Jamming to jingle bell rock in early November is not actually going to hurt anyone. As we all know, the Target’s and Costco’s of the nation start selling their holiday gear well before Thanksgiving, providing the impetus to rock out to cherished holiday classics. By not doing so, we would have to ignore the red and green Starbucks cups and skip over way too many radio stations. From this point of view, listening to Christmas music does not rob Thanksgiving of its attention, rather brings people in merry spirits even earlier.

Thanksgiving is over, let the holiday cheer begin:

On the flip side, those who wait to listen to Christmas music until after Thanksgiving want to give each underappreciated holiday its due respect. Their resistance to add Santa, sleigh bells and snowmen back into their vocabulary is in deference to the Thanksgiving holiday. This consideration may not stem from the holiday’s controversial history, but rather in honor of devoting a season to gratitude for everything we have to be thankful for. To preemptively transition to Christmastime would be to ruin the rhythms of the seasons entirely—just imagine putting up skeletons and pumpkins in the yard in late August. By waiting until after the Thanksgiving holiday, one can not only enjoy their Christmas tunes guilt-free but also savor the magical holiday spirit that arrives the month of December.  


Whether or not you are reading this article accompanied by your Holiday Hits playlist or are sticking to other genres until the Macy’s Day Parade has come and gone, I think we can all agree that 2020 has been a rough enough year. So, let’s all respect everyone’s coping mechanisms, whether that be to enjoy the eager anticipation of the holiday season or to find solace in the early celebration of the most wonderful time of the year.