In Defense of the Christmas Creeps

This was taken on September 24th 0_o

I was flipping through the radio stations as I was driving into work today to find that San Antonio station KQXT 101.9 had already started their annual Christmas music marathon.  Now, I love Christmas music, but the fact that they were doing so a week before Thanksgiving struck me as being just a hair too early.

The phenomena is known as “Christmas Creep.” While on a certain level it is getting ridiculous, there is one argument against it that I can’t get onboard with.  It goes like this: “Why does Christmas stuff have to come around so soon…what about Thanksgiving?”

What about Thanksgiving?

There really isn’t much to it.  Most folks will travel, spend a day or two with loved ones and perhaps enjoy a turkey dinner.  That’s it.  Thanksgiving is just what it says on the box: a day to give thanks and get a day off from work (or a four-day weekend if you are truly fortunate).

While Thanksgiving is special to many people, it isn’t sacred by any stretch of the imagination.  Heck, some stores have gone from opening at oh-dark-thirty the day after to opening late on Thanksgiving Day itself.

To be fair, let’s look at it from the store’s perspective: Thanksgiving does little for stores that don’t sell food, so I don’t really blame them for wanting to get an early jump on the Christmas shopping season.

So yeah, while stores opening on Thanksgiving Day sucks and getting a jump on Christmas in September or even October is a bit much, I think the week before Thanksgiving is just fine for retailers to start getting the ball rolling.

Finally, I should confess that I have been tuning to that Christmas music station on occasion, so I’m probably part of the problem.  🙂


Cheesy New Year Fun!

I’m not a fan of big gatherings (anime cons nonwithstanding) and thus, I usually spend New Year’s Eve at my parents’ or at my apartment if I’m not up for making the drive to visit them.

A few years ago, I was living with my parents during some rough times, and it was New Year’s Eve.  Thanks in part to the crappy job I had at the time, I had decided to just stay in and really not do much of anything.  It was a pretty lackadaisical evening, and I soon had a craving…for CHEESE!

Not just any cheese, mind you, but melted cheese with Ro-Tel diced tomatoes made in a Crock-Pot with tortilla chips dipping into the melty cheesy goodness…mmmmm.  I told my folks I was going to the store to get the ingredients, and suddenly inspired by the power of the cheese (or perhaps the power of the suggestion of cheese, but that’s being anal) they went to the store as well to get shrimp, cocktail sauce, vegetables, ranch dip, and drinks.

Soon, I’m cubing cheese, Mom is cutting vegetables, and Dad is going next door to invite family over.  What began as a humdrum evening soon became a fun time with family and friends, and all because of THE POWER OF CHEESE!

Fast forward to December 31, 2009…I decided to stay at home for New Year’s Eve because there was an anime convention I wanted to go to that weekend.  As I’m at my desk working (and seething over having to work on New Year’s Eve), I soon had a craving…for CHEESE!  I was practically drooling as I punched in the ingredients list into my phone, intending to stop at the store on the way home.

I arrived home at my apartment, and went to rinse out the Crock-Pot before getting started.  I figured it would just be me and the cheese hanging out at home for New Year’s, oh well.  I then got a phone call from a friend, it seemed he and his wife had just gotten home from their holiday trip and were wondering what I was going to do for New Year’s.

I replied that I was going to make some cheese and probably play some Rock Band, so I figured what the hey and invited them over.  They said yes, and a few invites sent via text message later, I had a group of friends over hanging out, playing games, and just having a good time…all because of THE POWER OF CHEESE!

Some folks have black-eyed peas for New Year’s, my mom makes menudo (which I sadly often miss *sniff*) but I’ll be whipping out the old Crock-Pot next New Year’s Eve in order to UNLEASH THE CHEESE!

Side note:  I never use Velveeta, I have found that the generic/store brands (HEB in particular) have less sodium and more cheesy goodness!