The Camp Vamp: Katrina Fox

Commentary on GLBTIQ issues, social justice and some of life's quirks.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Christmas uncheer

Christmas. I’m already over it. I lay one of the reasons behind this at the feet of the David Jones store on Market Street in the city, whose incessant playing of ‘The 12 Days of Christmas’ makes me crazy. And you don’t even have to be inside the store to hear it – it’s blaring out from across the road in Hyde Park – so even those of us who can’t stand large department stores find ourselves, completely against our will, mumbling the wretched tune, especially the line, ‘Five golden rings’ (Freudian analysis anyone?) while walking back to the office at lunchtime.

Then there’s the Sally Army volunteers with their little portable stands, which read ‘Jesus is the Reason for the Season’, that make me cringe. I’m not sure why. Maybe it’s the rhyme or I just don’t like people who wear bonnets. I guess I now have some inkling into the mind of the homophobe as s/he lumps us all into a generalised mass upon which to dump his/her disapproval. Homophobia, bonnetophobia – it’s all the same. Except I do believe bonnet-wearers are entitled to equal rights and financial benefits and, even though they annoy the hell out of me, I firmly support their right to wear bonnets and would sign a petition or online poll to that effect, so I guess I’m better than the average homophobe. Phew.

I probably sound like a right misery guts, but while I love flashing lights, sparkly reindeer and glittery tinsel as much as the next drag queen or high-femme lesbian, I possess an uncanny ability to see beyond the razzle dazzle to the rotten underbelly of Christmas and what it stands for: an excuse for even more mass consumerism of useless items that only serves to make the department stores, not loved ones, richer (a nice phone call or email on Christmas Eve could do that and is far less stressful than being jostled and shoved in the manic crowds doing last-minute “Christmas shopping”).But then I hear about little seasonal things that people have done which bring a smile to my face and a warm glow to my heart. Like the Santa who was sacked from London’s poshest store, Harrods, for making “lewd” and “inappropriate” comments to adults in the Father Christmas World grotto. The store is frequented by royalty and having one of its green shiny carrier bags is seen as a status symbol. I will confess to succumbing to the need to validate myself through brandishing the ‘label’ of an overpriced department store nearly 20 years ago by buying an item from Harrods. Being a cheap bitch it was only a packet of bin-liners from the food hall section. They cost about four pounds, ten times what I’d have paid in Sainsbury’s, but I got the carrier bag.

Nowadays I’m so over it that anyone, such as 'Bad Santa', who pisses off the management of a store that sells a pack of six “luxury” crackers for $5,034 is all right by me. Merry bloody Christmas.


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