Monday, November 26, 2012

You can't control the Music, it controls you

After running a highly accurate and official survey, results have determined that the most common Facebook or Twitter complaint during this time of year is about retail stores' Christmas music and how much it annoys the typer.

I am the anomaly in these results. I worked in a retail store for five holiday seasons, the same retail store, that played a set of sixteen holiday songs over and over.

Let me say this again: for five holiday seasons I heard the same sixteen (16) holiday songs on average of 40 hours a week.

I never got sick of those songs.

I loved the chance to learn all the words and timing of each tune. Being able to sing my way through helping pissed off customers into having possibly a slighting less (or more) pissed off day by being helped by a singing employee.

That's false. I didn't even pay attention when I was singing the limited line-up of holiday songs. And let's be truthful, I already knew the words to most of the songs. So did my fellow co-workers. We all knew the various arrangements of Santa Baby and Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas. Some people would curse and scream on Black Friday, not at the hordes of people trying to save $20 by shortening their life span by stressing themselves out to shop on Black Friday. They would curse at the first hearing of the annual holiday music.

But we couldn't control the music.

Eventually, instead of resisting the holiday music and we couldn't control, a calm meditative peace settled over the store. Or at least over me. There is a freedom knowing that you know all the words to the next song, a power in not using any energy to subconsciously identify the next song in your brain (the way your brain is constantly identifying things. Imagine a thrift store, brain recognizes work over time in there.)

Plus, most holiday songs are upbeat and happy. Which puts everyone in a good mood. Even people who say they hate the holiday music, you will notice those are the same people that hate lots of things. Which means hating things is one of the hobbies that they enjoy, therefore hating holiday music makes them happy!

But let's stay on the point. Most holiday songs are happy....except the Christmas Shoes. (Which is such an emotional song that it was made into a Made for TV movie featuring Rob Lowe.)

Ah! A sad song about a kid with a dying mother and new shoes for Jesus.

Thankfully, this song was not one of the 16 that I have cememted in my brain as my holiday soundtrack for like.

To be honest, I think I have only heard The Christmas Shoes once in it's entirety. What I know of the songs comes from friends who were late because they "Got Christmas Shoe-ed" in the car. Because apparently the song will take you by surprise and then lock you in to a frozen zone of weeping, like Medusa and her snake hair but instead of being turned into stone you turn into an emotional monster. People after hearing the Christmas Shoes can be identified by the frozen tear tracks on their face and a sudden need to give their shoes to someone, anyone!

Most people find coping mechanisima for The Christmas Shoes; seasoned Christmas Shoe-ers can recognize the first notes of the song and turn it off before it sucks you in, other people just start talking loudly to distract from the song plays.

But other people will shout "It's the Christmas Shoes!" and run away, leaving unsuspecting victims to wonder what that nutjob meant and listen to the song, therefore getting themselves sucked into the quicksand of music and sadness.

Most people survive a Christmas Shoes attack, however, no one recovers completely, scare left on a surviving listener is the person always telling you that they heard the Christmas Shoes that one time and holiday music has never been the same.

Beware the Christmas Shoes.

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