I'm an American. Probably a fairly typical one. I'm largely ignorant to the affairs of the rest of the world, so long as they don't affect me in any direct way. But I'm still a reasonably proud American. Proud enough that when our only unique holiday, Thanksgiving, is trampled over and left for dead by the rush for the "holiday season", I tend to get a little upset.
It might be showing my age a little, but I remember a time when there was no such thing as "seasonal" decorations. You had New Year's, Valentine's, St. Patrick's, maybe Mother's/Father's Day, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and then Christmas. Each holiday had its own alloted time for preparation/celebration (generally kept only to the month it was in). And each holiday had its own set of decorations. Little by little, though, that changed. And it of course started with Xmas.
Every year, Xmas seems to be coming earlier and earlier. I've already heard people talking about Xmas shopping. And every year, more and more of my soul dies because of this. Christians brute forced their way into the celebration I don't know how long ago, and that take over has yet to stop. Xmas will, I believe soon enough, become a year-long celebration, much like it already is for Bronner's Christmas Wonderland. This abomination of a store in mid-Michigan is literally nothing but Christmas, every single day of the year - except for Christmas itself, the one day the store is closed. Retailers, no doubt, are some of the main contributors to this disease-like infestation of the holiday. Some already have their decorations up; it won't be long before they all do.
Even the entertainment industry cashes in on it unabashedly. Once the vague Halloween "scary" movie rush ends, everyone is gearing up for the holiday season, be it new movies, or DVD/Blueray releases. Not to mention the slew of shitty Christmas albums musical has-beens and hacks put out in order to pander for a little extra cash.
But back to my point: It's because of all these things that Thanksgiving has been almost entirely forgotten. It's a shell of its former glory. It used to actually be a time for family to come together, share a meal, divulge what they're thankful for, and part with each other until the following month. Now it's nothing but an excuse to gorge on a buffet of piss-poor from-a-box foods, watch Football, and get a day off from school/work.
Thanksgiving used to mean something to this country. I know one little rant on an insignificant blog will do absolutely nothing to change priorities back toward where they ought to be, but it's nice to dream. This year, as with years before it, and every year following, I'll be celebrating Thanksgiving twice. Once on the fourth Thursday in Novemeber, and again on December 25th.