the westminster news
Published by the students of Westminster School
By Keegan Bankoff ‘22 and Ben Mihailovich ‘22
All I want for Christmas is … not to hear Christmas music too early. With the festive season hurtling towards us like a precisely-aimed snowball, one crucial question lingers — how early is too early to listen to Christmas music?
As Thanksgiving approaches, we have hit the beginning of the annual chart spike for Mariah Carey’s hit, "All I Want for Christmas is You." Too often, Thanksgiving is passed over in favor of Christmas because people consider it a more enjoyable holiday. Before a water polo practice one afternoon, I was speaking with Mr. Kendall, and the topic of Christmas music was raised. I was surprised (well, not really) to hear that he was threatening to hand out reports for any Mariah Carey and other festive music that found his ears before Thanksgiving break. I have heard of numerous occasions where this happened; hopefully, the guilty have avoided the lurking PK attempting to catch their jolly music like The Grinch snatching presents from under the tree.
About a week ago, we sent out a poll asking the community to choose the date they believed was appropriate to hit play on the Christmas playlist. Given the dates Nov. 1, Black Friday and Dec. 1 (plus others, which I will get to in a minute), a clear majority was prominent. Over 40% of the almost 200 respondents said Black Friday was the acceptable date, with another 30% agreeing that any time after Thanksgiving was okay. We received many reasonable and funny responses in the ‘other’ category, like “the best time to listen to Christmas music is immediately after u have mowed a fat thanksgiving plate and laying down on the couch watching some football,” and “most stores at this point are already into Christmas mode so the music is sure to follow. Many of the Christmas channels on SiriusXM are also out. Personally, I feel it is a little too early. Halloween is barely in the rear view mirror!” We also received some interesting responses, per se: “all day every day,” and “December 25 only.” Clearly, the extremists were well represented in the other section.
I understand that Christmas music is an issue so divisive and anger-inducing that we risk being bombarded by those who disagree with our opinions just by simply expressing them. That is why we chose to write about this personal and sometimes sensitive topic. In all honesty, when we think of Christmas music, just a handful of songs come to mind. Furthermore, many of these are renditions of the same few songs by a bazillion different artists. This over-playing starts to deter the spirit of the holiday and make it less joyful. Personally, I don’t think Christmas music begins on a set date. A time that many overlook is the first snowfall. In New England, this typically comes around the beginning of December as it does not usually hit freezing temperatures until that time. To me, snow indicates a cozy, warm holiday season and feels like the most natural way to start listening to Christmas music. But, many are obsessed with having a set date as to when it is acceptable. Though we may disagree, we are always open to listening to any thoughts on when you believe it right to begin jamming to holiday music.