Dear Crabby, Where Has All The Holiday Spirit Gone?

Dear Crabby,

Like a lot of people, I’m hustling around and trying to get those last-minute gifts and other holiday preparations done before Christmas. Is it just me or are people a little ruder this year? Everyone I encounter no matter where I go just seems to be in a foul mood. Where has all the cheer, goodwill, and holiday spirit gone?

Holly Hopeful

Dear Holly Hopeful,

Instead of singing, ‘It’s the most wonderful time of the year!’ they should change the lyrics to ‘It’s the most stressful time of the year!’ I don’t know why, but after Thanksgiving people look at their yearly to-do lists and realize they just have one month left to squeeze everything in. And then they go about driving themselves crazy trying to do so. Add into the mix Christmas and New Year’s and the stress levels go through the roof. You know who I think is to blame for all of these unrealistic expectations? Hallmark. Now hear me out.

Dear Crabby sits infront of his laptop

Dear Crabby Gives Advice

Mrs. Crabby loves the Hallmark channel. She watches it so much that I’m pretty sure our TV automatically defaults to the channel when it gets turned on. The absolute worst offenders in the Hallmark universe are their legion of Christmas movies. The start showing some of them back in July (because who doesn’t love thinking about snow during the summer?) and then pick up the insanity again in late October (after all, who needs fall?). If you’ve never been subjected to watching one of these sugar-coated nightmares, I’ll give you the gist. They use the same dozen actors who are always placed in a handful of idyllic settings with essentially the same plot in all of them. And here’s where the unrealistic expectations and pressure on normal humans comes in. Every inch of every home is perfectly decorated to the hilt. Not only that, but all the women all in full makeup, hair, heels, and multiple coordinating outfits as they ‘rush’ around getting in their last-minute shopping while simultaneously trying to save the town from impending disaster. Honestly. How is any human supposed to live up to that? I’d be grouchy too if I was trying to model my life after this silly fantasy. And it’s not just the ladies suffering, the guys in these movies are expected to find the perfect Christmas tree, have a bounty of lights expertly hung on the house (with no burnt-out bulbs), and be able to construct some type of structure at a moment’s notice. Oh. And it all happens in a convenient two-hour timeframe. Folks. I think it’s time we had a reality check.

I’m not saying folks can’t have nice Christmases. All I want you to understand is that you don’t need every bell and whistle to make it happen. Because everyone is already pretty stressed with their daily lives with work and family commitments. And don’t even get me started on what’s happening in the world. So, let’s all just take a step back and relax. Instead of getting ticked that the line is so slow, try striking up a conversation with the person who is also stuck in line with you. With a little kindness, we can all make it through the holidays unscathed and hopefully in the process, rediscover some of that holiday spirit. If that doesn’t work, try adding some of the other holiday spirits to the mix. It couldn’t hurt.

I hope this answers your question and that you have a Merry Christmas!

Dear Crabby

About Dear Crabby

Stuck in a rut? Need some biased advice from a crabby old baby-boomer? Read regularly by thousands and loved by some, Dear Crabby answers questions weekly to life's challenges. Send him a note at


  1. Steven Westerby says

    Dear Crabby, Merry Christmas!

  2. On October 3, 1863, expressing gratitude for a pivotal Union Army victory at Gettysburg, President Abraham Lincoln announces that the nation will celebrate an official Thanksgiving holiday on November 26, 1863. And, that the third Thursday of each November, Thanksgiving would be celebrated! That said, this year and according to the 2020 calendar, it has been moved to the fourth/last Thursday of the month. Who approved this? Everyone I know are saying that it is making Christmas preparations hurried and exhausting! Was this done to support those few who own the large stores? For several years now those few have been creeping into our Thanksgiving. First it was Black Friday, now stores are opened on Thanksgiving. Is the global goal to get rid of the unique American Holiday, Thanksgiving? Just asking . . .

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