Sometimes I feel like I’m the only person who absolutely hates the holidays. Of course, being the only vocal nonbeliever in a family of absolute nuts, it’s not really hard to believe.  But I still participate in the traditions and everything, like a good child should, and I hate it.

First off, let me make this clear that when I say that I hate “the holidays,” I really mean Christmas in particular.  I hate Christmas.  That’s my opinion, and I am in no way saying that everyone should hold the same contempt for the holiday that I do.  Why do I hate it?  I don’t know!  I just do.  It’s horrible and vile and I dislike it, and if you call me a grinch or say “Bah humbug” to mock me I will punch you in the face and scream my hatred at the top of my lungs.  You aren’t funny. You aren’t original. You’re just annoying.

“Okay, really, it’s not that bad,” you say.  Well, what about the near-constant bombardment of horrible in-season songs that hits you every time you walk into a store?  What about all the horrible inflatable Santas and snowmen that sit out on people’s yards?  Those snowmen aren’t fooling anyone; it doesn’t even snow where I live!  Whatever.  It doesn’t matter.

Okay.  Maybe the real reason I hate the holidays is because my mother brings out this horrible clock that plays Christmas songs every hour.  Its sound resonates through the whole house, so there is no escape from its horrible death call, no matter where you try to hide.  It’s been about 14 years now that she’s had that clock, and not one year has she gone without it.  At this point, the clock is so old that I can no longer even recognize some of the songs it plays, but it just keeps going and going, marking every hour that passes with warped versions of overly cheerful tunes.   Eventually, the repeated songs just fade into the background as my mind adjusts to hearing them.

Maybe you think I only hate this clock so far as I can complain about it, maybe you think it’s one of those things that I love to hate, maybe you think that I don’t actually hate the clock, but only pretend to because it’s embarrassing.  The truth is I actually do hate this clock, and my hatred goes much deeper than regular hate.  I don’t just hate the clock, I hate what it represents.  I hate this clock because it acts as if my willingness to waste time is something to celebrate.   You see, it’s not just a clock; it’s a symbol!  It’s a symbol of things and stuff.  You know how it is.

Lauren Schroeter is a junior majoring in geology and religion.