I wish it wasn’t Christmas every day from November

Bauble-tastic - a scene from a window display in  Jaegar, George Street, Edinburgh, 2003 (Pic: Phil Wilkinson)
Bauble-tastic - a scene from a window display in Jaegar, George Street, Edinburgh, 2003 (Pic: Phil Wilkinson)

The calendar shows it is only just mid-November, and already the tinsel is being unpacked, and folk are getting into the festive spirit with a level of enthusiasm that is actually rather scary.

I have no idea where they live for the rest of the year - possibly Lapland, in a wooden shack made out of reindeer antlers where mum stays home and bakes endless mince pies to feed the choir that trills ‘’fa-la-bleedin’-la’’ 24 hours a day.

Festive flashback: Children play on the model of the Golden Arrow engine in Jenners Edinburgh 1965 (Pic: TSPL)

Festive flashback: Children play on the model of the Golden Arrow engine in Jenners Edinburgh 1965 (Pic: TSPL)

I hate to burst their baubles, but November isn’t Christmas.

The last fireworks have barely whizzed into orbit before some dafties appear from their attics with boxes of tinsel, a tree, and enough glitter to make a 70s’ glam rock band look under-dressed.

People, a plea. Gonnae no!

A novelty Christmas jumper really isn’t for life – it’s not even for the whole of December.

The standard response to all of this is switch on your Rudolph shaped novelty flashing bow tie, and snort a derisive ‘’bah, humbug!’’

But there is a time and place for everything, and, for me, Christmas come at the end of December.

The 12 days of Christmas has a magic that the 42 days simply cannot sustain.

Edinburgh’s Christmas lights are switched on this weekend, and Santa is arriving in Kirkcaldy.

Both will draw big crowds as the retail sector moves firmly into tinsel-mode.

On radio, DJs are just itching to press play on their Christmas CDs – the same 12 songs they broadcast last year (and the year before) – and unleash Noddy Holder’s war cry that it is, indeed, Christmas.

Only, it’s November.

You can see the gap between Hallowe’en and Christmas thinning out by the year, even although there is absolutely nothing festive about staring at giant tubs of Twiglets six weeks before the day itself.

A friend of mine nailed it when he said ‘‘y’know – I really like Christmas, but I can’t stand the run-up to it.’’

I think he spoke for many.

Christmas IS special. It IS fun. I hope it never loses its magic.

Packing all the festivities, the food, the sparkle, the great telly programmes and daft games into a 12-day period is exactly why it stands apart from the rest of the year.

You can festoon your winter wonderland with as many baubles as you like – if it’s still November then it simply lacks the feeling of Christmas because it’s about as fake as the ‘snow’ your wind machines churn out.

And there is nothing more desperate than forced jollity.

I suspect we go along with it partly because we have no choice, but also because deep down we know we WILL get into the spirit once the 25th gets closer.

Before then, the real world has a habit of kicking in the door to Santa’s grotto – school, work, paying bills, sorting out bits around the house. Excuse us if we don’t do all of that while wearing antlers that flash on and off and the dug goes hyper trying to attack the tree.

We talk about the magic of Christmas and then do our utmost to bludgeon it by elongating it to the best part of six weeks. Little wonder some folk have their tree down and their decorations packed away before the bells. They’ve had enough.

If you want to make Christmas special – really special – then you can, and there’s plenty time left to do just that.