I have, first, an update to the post about the plethora of Halloween shops in my neighborhood. I missed one.
Here’s one in an underutilized portion of a shopping center that’s catty-corner from the one holding Store #3 in that post. Unlike most of the others, it doesn’t occupy a vacant former video or electronics store, but it IS next to yet another fading video rental store. We’ll number this one 3A, since it’s between the existing stores 3 and 4 on that original list. That’s 7 stores in a single 6.4 mile stretch of roads.
CLICK HERE to see the full list of stores in the original post.
The next step in the mammoth Halloween marketing process will be, of course, the erection of the “pumpkin patches” all over vacant lots, closed car washes and the corners of various shopping center parking lots. I haven’t seen any yet, but they’ll be going in any day. Once Nov. 1 rolls around, they’ll clear out the pumpkins and quickly stock up on evergreen trees. I suppose those trees are being harvested right now and bundled up for shipment.
I want to add that I popped into Home Depot on Saturday to pick up a couple of things and was immediately in Christmas season: trees, decorations and the like are crammed into the changing display area at the front of the store that has fans in summer and lawn furniture in spring. Man, they are wasting no time.
We Americans, at least, are familiar with this annual glut of consumerism that, according to my observation, now begins with the Labor Day sales, coincident with the August 31st opening of Halloween stores, and continues through Thanksgiving and the end-of-year holidays.
What we wonder is, why isn’t the government doing more to promote MORE spending on MORE holidays? This business of investing in banks and auto makers and highway construction and green energy is okay, but, man, it takes a long time. I think a special panel devoted to inserting more capitalism into holidays would be an immediate stimulus to the economy. Once we finish with the December holiday season, there’s going to be a big downturn until things pick up for the florists and telephone companies on Valentine’s Day and then Easter, so it’s time to act. Are there NO holidays in January with which buying can be associated? Create one!
The ramifications will be obvious to everyone without my beating this subject to death. Businesses of every kind are ingenious at linking sales to ANY holiday (mattress retailers always seem to like Presidents’ Day, for example). With a little federal stimulus, there’s no telling how far we can take it. Think of the joyful anticipation of the kids in just a few years of the slam-bang celebration of Crispus Attucks Day. If we are unable to find a way to capitalize on the first American martyr of the Boston Massacre, a black American, also descended from native Americans, then we don’t deserve the title, “Capitalists.” There must be dozens of underutilized holidays lurking on the calendar, just waiting to become stimulators.
And, by the way, I’m thinking the Tea Party will want to adopt Mr. Attucks as one of their major role models. I’m surprised they haven’t done it already. I keep seeing these cats dressed up like Ben Franklin or something, but there’s a real hero they’ve missed a chance to exploit and broaden their, uh, demographic.