The more things change the more they stay the same...

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Summary: A quote from a Ramsey Campbell short story leads me to have something like hope this Christmas season, which is to say the retail event that started weeks ago...

BLOT: (03 Nov 2011 - 08:51:31 PM)

The more things change the more they stay the same...

It was October when my father's Christmas cards arrived, on a Saturday; I was working in the shop. It annoyed him to have to anticipate Christmas so much, to compete with the supermarket.
Ramsey Campbell. "The Chimney". Dark Companions. 1982. Samhain Publishing, Ltd. ed, 2011. (Kindle: 4158-4160).

"The Chimney", which is a fun little bit of Christmas tinged horror, but also not exactly a ghost story except in the Aickman-esque vein, has that bit above, about a man getting Christmas goods in October "to compete with the supermarket". This story was written June 1975 [according to the Afterward] and so while it is easy to hate on stores for spitting in the face of Christmas nowadays by commercializing it and starting it far too early, well, there was enough of that to be in mind for a character written in the 70s and possibly set a bit before that (the 12-year-old main character is grown up more in the later pages, which might be thought of as being in the mid-70s).

And if reading about the bastardization of the holidays being over a quarter of a century old isn't enough to make you shudder, well...

I was lying there with my eyes squeezed tight when it let go of the sheets and went away. My throbbing lungs had forced me to take shallow breaths; now I breathed silently open-mouthed, though that filled my mouth with fluff. The tolling of my ears subsided, and I realised the thing had not returned to the chimney. It was still in the room.
(Kindle 4290-4292).


Written by Doug Bolden

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