On my return from Phoenix last weekend, flying into Sunport, after two days of meetings that seemed to last a month, the first thing I did was what many of us, I suppose, do. I tuned in the car radio, looking for familiar Albuquerque stations, and prepared to run a few errands.
Imagine my surprise. I thought for a few minutes that I must be in a time warp. Was I really gone for the interminable stretch of time that the weekend had seemed to be? If it isn’t yet All Saints’ Day, why is my car radio playing Christmas music? Have I somehow lost six weeks?
To add insult to injury, it wasn’t just any Christmas music. It was Bing Crosby trying to convince us that “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas.” Nothing, save “White Christmas,” could have seemed more symbolically audacious.
Yes, faithful readers, there is now a station in Albuquerque which is playing Christmas music round the clock until Dec. 25. Adding to the mix, it is commercial free.
Why!? Screams every fiber of my being. I love everything that comes between now and Christmas, every hint of the harvest festival, every blessed fall day. Where I grew up, Thanksgiving is doubly precious because it also marks the beginning of deer season. Lots of good reasons to savor every moment that comes between now and then.
Where, then, lies the confusion of seasons? We do live in a world that rushes, or stretches, many things in the name of commercialism, which I suspect was and is the driving force behind Radio Santa, as it is calling itself.
The World Series, the fall classic, just finished last night, whereas it used to be predictably an early October event.
I suppose that is OK, because the formerly January Super Bowl now clashes with Valentine’s Day.
If you fail to see how those are financial issues, or commercial issues, just add up for yourself all of the extra revenue from those additional playoff games.
Nonetheless, there ought to be limits. Most of us, I suspect, really don’t want to hear Christmas music until after Thanksgiving, which we beg to be allowed to enjoy.
Curmudgeonly and Scrooge-like, I readjusted my dial and began to navigate the Albuquerque traffic.
Clyde Davis is a Presbyterian pastor and teacher at Clovis Christian High School. He can be contacted at: