If you’re from the midwest, you will be familiar with Christmas villages. They’re large ceramic buildings all moms love because they’re cute and all dads hate because they’re enormous, fragile, and almost impossible to store away the other eleven months. If your marriage can survive the yearly unboxing of the Christmas village, then it’s as strong as the miniature elf lingerie store that survived the summer. Oops, I dropped it. OOPS, there are ceramic elf panties everywhere! Everywhere.
Christmas villages are a multi-million dollar industry with new expansions released each year, and with every building costing around $100 apiece, it adds up quickly. Village makers have to compel people to expand their villages. They’re not going to throw out the old General Store every year and buy the updated one like it’s an iPhone, so tiny architects have thrown together some pretty unlikely Christmas buildings. And I don’t mean like weird and quirky shops. I mean things like the Christmas Debtors’ Prison.
This Christmas Debtors’ Prison will look great next to the many Christmas stores where your villagers can go into Christmas debt. It’s from the Department 56 Dickens Village Series, where you can also get a Christmas cemetery for your debtors to go to when they’ve worked themselves to Christmas death. You’ll love the cheery description that comes with this item.
Victorian England, the center of culture for the world where many traditions we celebrate today took shape! Traditions like crushing the poor under our jolly holiday boots! It seems insane to make this weird little idol to Dickensian times and how festive and traditional they were when they were mostly very bad for everyone. Even the Christmas villages aren’t working to hide that from anybody. It’s like saying, “Welcome to the time of Charles Dickens when Christmas was really Christmas! Oh, step around the bodies of the orphans please; we had a little ho-ho-homicide this morning.”
Now, you might be wondering who will arrest the debtors of my tiny fictional Christmas town? Well, don’t worry, my friend, because there are many, many, Christmas village police stations. People who own Christmas villages are very concerned about their fictional safety.
Why would you create a happy little fictional Christmas town and then imply there are crimes in it? There’s an itty bitty Christmas SVU that deals with all of the especially heinous Christmas crimes, and they have a bloodhound puppy awww! His nose is way better than Rudolph’s because it can find the bodies!
I tried to find some ceramic burglars, but there weren’t any! Then it hit me; any townsperson could be a criminal. They’re all suspects now. This guy looks especially dodgy to me.
This isn’t public intoxication. This guy declared himself Emperor of Beer. The police won’t stand for that, buddy. They run a tight ship in that fictional Christmas village. The police even still carry billy clubs to distribute season beatings to all the low-life criminal scum of Christmas town.
If you’re going to fill your Christmas town with whimsical crimes, why not go full bore and also add in some of that good old-timey disenfranchisement? You know why the Christmas village is so messed up? Women still can’t vote there. Truly this is a nostalgic paradise! Just be sure not to put the little protestors too close to the tiny police station.
Where would these women be picketing, I wonder? Perhaps outside of the mayor’s office, or in front of the store that sells cinnamon rolls, only cinnamon rolls, because sure, that’s not a front for anything. Or, maybe they want to be visible. Maybe they’re placed in the spot in town with the most foot traffic like the Christmas village Casino:
There are so many Christmas casinos! One even has a seedy little neon sign. What does a casino have to do with Christmas? What is the economy of the Christmas village based on? Because I’m seeing a pretty clear casino to police station to debtors’ prison pipeline developing here. Let’s take a look at the rest of the Christmas village’s potential economy.
You’ve got your Christmas-based food places. There’s a business called Chestnut King that sells only chestnuts and for some reason advertises that they’re open late. I guess, in case you’re stumbling home from the casino at 4 AM and a monster chestnut craving hits you.
There are also a lot of nutcracker stores. You know, because you’ve got so many chestnuts you bought at 4 AM and now it’s the next morning, you’re awake, you’re hungover, and you need to crack those nuts. It’s an extremely wood-and-nut-based economy, I guess? It’s also big on any store that has added an extra P and an E at the end to the word shop, which I hate because all it does is make my brain read shop as “show pay,” which would make this store The Nutcracker Nut Show Pay. That’s a very different store– one that I’ve been to many times, but it doesn’t belong in a Christmas village!
The Pioneer Woman has a Christmas village line at Walmart that includes a restaurant called P-Town Pizza which I thought was insane. You should only have to hear the phrase “Do you want to eat at P-Town” out loud once before you change the name of your restaurant. “Sorry I’m not in the mood for P-Town today. I had Piss City Chestnuttes for lunch, so I’m pretty full.”
However, P-Town is apparently the real name of her real world pizza restaurant, which she just made a tiny ceramic version of. So, that’s yet another grim reality from our world that has seeped into the Christmas village.
The Christmas village business that upsets me the most, the one that truly messes with my head and makes me question all of reality, is the model railroad shop. It’s a model town, and you designed a model railroad shop for it? Does this mean their society has fucking nerds? And does the model railroad shop sell Christmas village houses? Probably. Is one of the buildings an even smaller model railroad shop? It’s possible. Are we living inside a giant’s Christmas village right now? I hate this.
“I think there’s probably too much terrible shit in our prime universe for us to be living inside the world’s largest Christmas village,” you fools might say. “Guess what. There’s more than one Christmas village children’s hospital,” I would retort. Some of the children in this tiny Christmas world are dying.
An adorable kid hospital is perfect for when the Christmas children inhale too much second hand smoke at the casino or have a whoopsy at the workhouse and get merrily mangled in the machinery. I guess if there aren’t any sick children in your village, there’s no one for Christmas magic to cure? So in a way, this is inserting some suffering in your nostalgia for the specific purpose of your later enjoyment. “Dance for me, orphans! Ok, you can pause to cough a little bit, but then keep dancing!”
Somehow I still don’t find this to be the most upsetting Christmas village piece available. Imagine if you will, a world wherein you create a cute little dream town with its nut-based economy, and its quaint, holiday-themed small businesses, and then in the middle of town you plunk a big old Walmart Supercenter.
How do you expect The Nut Show Pay to survive? Do you have any idea the kind of deals Walmart has on chestnuts? The economic impact of this store on the village’s overall economy is going to fill up that workhouse real fast. Luckily I’m pretty sure no one has ever bought one of these for their town. Walmart is trying to gaslight themselves into our Christmas nostalgia by pretending they belong in the Christmas village with all of the cute little shoppes.
But maybe I could picture this building sandwiched between the casino and a police station, I guess? Why the heck not! It’s the holiday season! Everyone is welcome in Christmas village! What do you mean you don’t want to come? It’s where many of the traditions we celebrate today took shape! Like the Christmas looting of the local Walmart by all of the sickly children! The police give them one free, heartwarming riot a year. Blessed Walmart holiday deals, ye tiny angels. May your living parents pay for their debtors’ crimes in peace.