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The holidays are here, people. There’s no denying it. Christmas commercials have been playing on the FM radio since as early as October (which I find incredibly inappropriate), and twinkling lights of every shape and color are making their appearance on suburban households and city lampposts across the country. You cannot enter a shopping mall, grocery store, or gas station without hearing the tune of an old Christmas classic crackling over the speakers.
The aisles are overflowing with gingerbread-house kits, fluffy snowmen that sing the Frosty theme song, and unending varieties of seasonal treats ranging from peppermint bark to eggnog. Though one could hypothetically argue that Christmas doesn’t really celebrate the birth of Jesus – it’s kind of more along the lines of a force-feeding of blatant consumerism dipped in red and green, I can still enjoy the aesthetic pleasantries of Christmas lights and the long-awaited return of college football playoffs that occur in conjunction with the holiday season. Amidst all of this joy, though, exists a distinct blight that aims to suck the elf spirit right out of my chimney. That, my friends, is a disastrous trend that is currently sweeping across this great nation from suburbia to city-proper: people are decorating their cars with reindeer antlers and Rudolph noses.
Each year, immediately following Thanksgiving, I begin to scan parking lots and lines of traffic, bracing myself for the first annual appearance of the car-reindeer-costume. This is one thing that really just presses my Scrooge-button. It may upset me more than the hellacious display of pure insanity and brutality among Black Friday shoppers (which generally provide for entertaining Twitter videos). Possibly more than forking out a stupid amount of dough to see The Nutcracker at the local ballet. Maybe even more than the forced social interactions with members of my extended family at holiday gatherings. When I catch a glimpse of that plush red nose – my heart shrinks to Grinch-proportions.
To be fair, I’m already critical of the stickers and various décor that people choose to affix to their vehicles on a normal basis. You’ve got everything from magnetic campaign decals, COEXIST bumper stickers, and Dave Matthews Band fire-dancer silhouettes displayed across the back windshields of every third Subaru in the city of Boulder.
Have you ever put a sticker on your car, and tried to remove it at some later point in time? It’s damn near impossible. Just as one does not simply walk into Mordor, one cannot simply peel said sticker off of your car and happily continue your life. It is an entire ordeal.
You will need a box cutter or other sharp scraping tool, a fresh bottle of Goo Gone, some Windex, and a whole lot of patience. At first, you will attempt to peel the sticker off in one fell swoop, but will only manage to remove the sticker’s top layer in small fragments, leaving a film of adhesive clinging to the glass, and tacky glue caked under your fingernails. You will work up a literal sweat attempting to scrub away the residue with that bottle of Goo Gone, and you will inevitably accept defeat when it becomes painfully obvious that the ghost of the SaltLife sticker that was once prominently and proudly displayed on your back windshield, will now remain a part of your car’s identity for eternity.
I already don’t care much for car decor in general, so the reindeer costumes that start popping up around Christmas-time really rub me the wrong way. First of all, how does one even come across such an item for purchase? Are people just haphazardly wandering the aisles at their local Target, when all of a sudden, they stumble upon this wonder of a Christmas decoration? Or do people intentionally seek out these novelties, ordering their very own Rudolph-kit on Amazon Prime? Do they impatiently, yet excitedly, wait for its arrival? Do they immediately affix them to their vehicles as soon as that blue and white package hits the stoop?
Honestly, I just think they’re tacky. But moreover, I read an article claiming that these particular car-ornaments may even lower your gas-mileage by acting as a deterrent to your car’s aerodynamics. Perhaps above all, these decorations bother me because I know they will still be around far past their expiration date. February is going to arrive, and the once-vibrant red noses will be faded. Crusty. The antlers will be crooked and ragged. The cheap felt will be coated in layers of grime that their respective cars have come into contact with on those holiday road trips upstate. People will still be driving them around, making ill-kept, internal promises to “take them off tomorrow.”
On the contrary, to these drivers’ credit, I have to assume that many (if not most) of these antler-wielding SUV’s belong to parents of young children. Perhaps sweet little Timothy Jr. was the one who truly called the shots on decking the mini-van out in Christmas cheer. I can imagine that if I was a parent with a child throwing a high-decibel tantrum over a Rudolph-abomination in the middle of Target, when all I needed to do was dart inside for a pack of Charmin and a bottle of Tide, that I, too, might be willing to shell out both the $5.99 and shred of my own dignity just to get the madness to stop.
Here’s the bottom line: everywhere you turn, you are already being completely inundated with all things Christmas. I’m also willing to bet that you’ve already decorated the mantle with monogrammed stockings and spice-scented candles, adorned that 15’ Balsam Hill California Baby Redwood tree with a tasteful array of tinsel, lights, and ornaments, and lovingly wrapped the exterior of your home in an incalculable number of twinkling bulbs.
*That last part was a joke, I know none of us can afford to purchase an actual house, so just decorate the railing on your apartment balcony with some cheap lights like the peasant you are.
In conclusion, there is simply no need to decorate your car for the holidays. Oh, and while we’re at it, could we leave the giant eyelashes that go on headlights and the dangling truck-nuts out of the equation, too? Just toss those in the fireplace right on top of the Yule log. Happy holidays. .