Thanksgiving has yet to pass, but Christmas decorations have already begun to appear in our food courts and malls, our city streets and living room corners. Some love the coziness it breeds; some feel it's arrived much to early. The hallways of Southern Living are ablaze with this very discussion, so everyone, sit back and prepare yourselves for another SOUTHERN FRIED debate.

Squaring off this week are Travel Fellow Katherine Owen and Southern Fried’s father, Travis M. Andrews. The question: IS IT TOO EARLY TO BEGIN CELEBRATING CHRISTMAS? Katherine wants to enjoy a leisurely Thanksgiving first, thank you very much, while Travis may or may not have had his tree up since this time last year. Take a look at their arguments and tell us what you think in the comments below.

 

Photo by Scott Suchman

COMIN' AT YA STRAIGHT OUTTA BIRMINGHAM Katherine Owen: Yesterday, the December issue of Southern Living landed on my desk. It’s a beautiful, cheer-filled 212 pages, and in all honesty, I could feel my heart grow warmer, a twinkle glimmer in my eye, and my attitude grow a little less Grinch-like just looking at it.

Yet, on Sunday, driving through my family’s neighborhood here in the 'Ham, I was haunted by visions of Christmas lights and plastic Santa Clauses that danced in someone’s fire hazard of a yard. My skin turned a certain seasick-crocodile shade of green.

 

Photo by Robbie Caponetto

Now, catty-corner to this house sat another creatively decorated residence, glowing with orange lights and oversized creepy-crawlies left over from Halloween, just two days prior. As of Sunday, Halloween was just two days past and Christmas was still 53 days away.

I believe that every holiday should be celebrated to the fullest. Celebrations are a great thing. But I also believe no one should have to drive through their neighborhood and be overwhelmed by the decoratively inane dissonance created by the presence of both Halloween and Christmas decorations.

It may seem a little late in the tirade to bring this up, but you should know that I am Christmas’ biggest cheerleader. The day after Thanksgiving, you can bet I’m going to get hella into the spirit. Because Christmas is the most perfect time of the year but it could not be so if we treat it as an any-day-in-October-or-November affair. So please, hold off a few more weeks. Christmas will be here in due time, but if we start now, we’ll be sick of the most joyous holiday before its proper time has come. Didn’t anyone ever tell you, "Don’t miss the party for the pre-game?"

 


 

 


 

 


 

THE HIP-HOP RAPPIN' MANDREWS FROM METAIRIE a.k.a. Travis M. Andrews: There comes a time every year when we spend a dime on joy and cheer, when we sing silly rhymes and drink dark beer. But there is, out there--believe if you dare--the type of person who, in a pinch, could easily described as a grumpy Grinch.

This year that person, name of Katherine Owen, would have you believe that Christmas (and its eve) belong where it’s usually remembered: the last month of the year, December.

 

Photo courtesy Fisherman Creations, Inc.

To Kat, having a tree too soon is like having bees in your food. To me, her plight, transcribed above, seems void of delight, not a labor of love. She truly believes each one of her peeves. Her belief is simple and can be read as such: we shouldn’t celebrate Christmas until Thanksgiving’s bitten the dust.

With a shout and a yippee, I must disagree with that pile of whoopee. Why not extend our time of jubilee? To the season, it’s key! Which is why, for 12 months, I’ve had up my tree.

Holiday songs dance and uplift, even when heard before Halloween ends. So though I could denigrate, I’ll offer my stance: I think we should celebrate far in advance. Bring on the mistletoe, bring on the tunes, lights red and indigo, songs about prunes. Goodbye pumpkin spice, hello Christmas mice. Farewell scary masks, welcome uncles' flasks. On Dancer and Donner and Cupid and Blitzen, I only wish we could wear early our mittens, so Owen please offer as some sign of admission that you enjoy indulging in Christmas tradition.

Even if early and annoying and canned, it shines sort of pearly and joyous and grand. So I’m sorry Ms. Owen for your sorrowful plight, because I’ll be decorating my apartment tonight. Stringing up lights and dreaming of Santa, prepping for winter nights and family in Atlanta, I’ll be enjoying the early warmth of the season, which you, Ms. Owen, consider as treason.

I hope that you can see some joy through the blight, a spot on the horizon that shines a bit bright. Here you go, an end to this fight, so an (early) Merry Christmas to all, and to all a goodnight. And as not to forsake tradition, behold the concluding submission: Sorry for eviscerating your argument, Katherine, but mine to yours is like sugar to saccharine. MIC DROP; MANDREWS OUT. 

 

Do YOU think it's too early to celebrate Xmas? Who’s right here? We want to hear from you. Please let us know in the comments below.

Southern Fried Column is a weekly column brought to you by Travis M. Andrews that focuses on the fun, the ridiculous, and the trending in these here Southern United States. Because sometimes home is a little absurd.