It’s beginning to sound a lot like Christmas everywhere you go. That is, seemingly no matter what establishment one might enter— grocery store, coffee shoppe, or seedy used-car lot— one hears exactly the same relentlessly repetitive playlist everywhere. Frosty the Snowman, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Jingle Bell Rock, Silent Night, Deck the Halls, Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer.
“But Erik,” you may protest, possibly in a reproachful sing-song voice, “But Eeeeerik, those songs are supposed to make you feel jolly! Don’t you feel jolly?”
No, the Muzak does not make me feel jolly. It drives me mad.
Personally, I’d love to seal all those worn-out songs into a time capsule, and give them all a well-deserved break, but I don’t think that would ever be allowed to happen. I suspect that retailers find them useful in stimulating Christmas Mania among shoppers, as a constant reminder that gifts and decoration must be purchased and consumed.
“But Erik,” you may protest, possibly in a reproachful sing-song voice, “But Eeeeerik, that’s awfully cynical. Some of us have fond memories associated with those songs. Isn’t there any music that reminds you of fond Christmas memories?”
Actually, yes, there is. I like to call it coffee-shop jazz, that unobtrusive sort of stuff that one often hears in coffee shops. The sort of thing that makes an interesting background, but doesn’t try to drown out your conversations, or boss you around, or tell you how to feel. Except maybe… to be mellow, to relax. And isn’t that what holidays should be about?