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02 December 2005 — The Two Kinds of Christmas Shoppers (9)

There are two kinds of Christmas shoppers: the Gateses and the Roths.

By now, the Gateses have finished all their Christmas shopping. They've wrapped all their gifts, addressed all their cards, and have only to make a trip to the post office to be done with the season. Gateses begin the Christmas shopping on December 26th; all year round, they pick things up here and there for the people on their list. During the week after Thanksgiving, Gateses sit in front of the television, wrapping presents for hours.

Roths, on the other hand, are only just now beginning to think of Christmas. They've just received a Christmas bonus in their paychecks, and it has occurred to them that perhaps it's time to buy some gifts. Roths have begun to deliberate over whom they ought to buy for this year: which friends, which family members. Roths don't think of Christmas until after Thanksgiving. It's true that if Roths see something Just Right during the year, they'll pick it up as a future gift, but they're also likely to forget they ever bought that little something. Roths have a long couple weeks ahead of them.

Kris is a Gates. I'm a Roth.


Comments
On 02 December 2005 (07:52 AM), Anonymous Roth said:

Welcome to this session of RA (Roth's Anonymous)...

Roths also think this whole Christmas thing would be a lot easier if we could just give each other $20 bills. Or better yet, everybody in the world should just hold on to the money and give out cards... then everybody could go get what they really want. In the process, we could virtually wipe out the need for garage sales...


On 02 December 2005 (08:17 AM), Amy Jo said:

I don't like to shop, but I love to give gifts. I enjoy thinking about some little thing a friend or family member might really enjoy and not expect. I am a bit bipolar at Christmas. I love making and giving gifts, but I hate the commercialization of Christmas. It makes me edgy and grumpy, almost scrooge-like. Yet, I feel all warm and fuzzy when I share and receive gifts, especially unexpected ones, like a hand-written card from a distant friend with a silly of their photo of their cat on the cover, or handmade, personalized-recipe cards (how cool is that!).

This also feeds into my love/hate relationship with Christmas music. There is a time (certainly NOT before Thanksgiving) and a place for Christmas music (baking cookies, decorating a tree, at a concert, Christmas Eve). Radio stations, stores and such that play Christmas music 24-7 well before December irk me . . .

I'm happy that I took up knitting nearly two years ago--it makes for great gifts and gives me an excuse to sit on my arse for hours at a time. Now, if I only had a few more months to finish all the projects I've started . . . And, well I've got to finish those handmade cards and start thinking about cookie boxes.


On 02 December 2005 (09:02 AM), Lisa said:

No doubt! We just received our first Christmas card--from Tiffany. It was a definite reminder that I haven't even gotten our cards yet. But, hey, it's nice to have something to put on the mantle.


On 02 December 2005 (09:16 AM), Blogeois said:

We here hate to buy gifts, give gifts, or receive gifts. Too many hurt feelings or malicious relatives in our pasts, I guess. So we don't. Christmas to us has become all about the decorating inside and out and the bloated, over the top Christmas dinner for just us two. No more bathmats, toilet seats, or rolls of quarters to do laundry with as gifts for me, thank you very much.


On 02 December 2005 (11:32 AM), Joel said:

I'm a classic Roth shopper. I will occasionally buy Aimee a gift well before Christmas, but there's a direct correlation between the earliness of the purchase and the likelihood that I'll misplace it. On more than one occasion Aimee has found such a gift while cleaning, moving, or redecorating, which is always a pleasant surprise, whatever the season.


On 02 December 2005 (11:43 AM), Amanda said:

I'm also one who's revolted against the commercialism of Christmas. I don't buy gifts, give cards or succumb to any of the other societal 'norms'. But I do love the season. I love the carols. I love receiving cards from friends. I very much enjoy all the goodie baskets that we receive at work. But I no longer feel compelled to reciprocate. Every so often there is a pang of guilt, but then I remind myself that I want to show love and kindness towards the people in my life every day of the year, not just at the holidays. And so that is what I try to do.


On 02 December 2005 (06:10 PM), tony said:

Some Roths have yet to begin; and will probably not do so until the week before.


On 07 December 2005 (11:32 AM), Michael Rawdon said:

I'm a Roth. I get more Roth-like every year. I don't really have any excuses except laziness.

My variation on Roth-ness is that I become aware that it's present-buying time every year around Thanksgiving, but then I don't start doing anything about it until around Pearl Harbor Day (the day Santa Claus drops a bomb on my December sloth, I guess).

On the other hand, I did just mail our Christmas cards this morning.


On 06 January 2006 (03:57 PM), J.D. said:

Here's further evidence of the dichotomy between Roths and Gates: Gates have already, only twelve days after Christmas, completed a portion of thier Christmas shopping for next year. Roths won't even begin thinking about it til twelve days before Christmas. Sheesh.