The scariest part of Halloween

The scariest part of Halloween

… is that when it’s over, we’re unequivocally in The Holiday Season. 😱 Okay, probably scarier for little one-person shops than for their customers.

I’ve been getting Sober Letters From Suppliers warning of potential supply-chain disruptions and shipping delays. I’ve been getting them from retailers too, and I’m sure so have you. I haven’t been sure whether to send one out myself or not. Is this just a more-subtle version of “let’s have an ever-earlier Black Friday sale in hopes of being the first one to grab holiday dollars”? I don’t know!

Wichita had a 1950’s-era amusement park with a wooden roller coaster that I rode in the 90’s. It was a great coaster in and of itself, but I have to say the underlying concern of “is it really safe?” added a certain je ne sais quoi to the experience. I kind of have that feeling now. The coaster is crawling up the chain hill, and nobody even knows what the track looks like on the other side. So shop early! But also I’m still trying to stock up! Is the coaster even going to make it to the top?

Here’s what I do know:

  • I have a pretty good stock of minky and velvet, but even if I run out of a color it comes (mostly) from China, which is doing fine.
  • Cases are climbing here in New Jersey but my household is 100% WFH and a bunch of introverts; we’re not at much direct risk.
  • Mail is slow going through Philadelphia lately. (That WaPo map? Guess which half of New Jersey I’m in.) I expect some of that to ease post-election but then get worse as holiday traffic picks up – that’s probably going to be the biggest issue.

I hope to have my own Christmas shopping done by the end of November, so it has all of December to make its way to family in Wichita and California. If other people are doing the same, that means I really need to have my shop stocked pretty soon – and after realizing that, I just fired off an order for dice for this year’s Advent calendars. I’ll have ten of the five-set kind that fit in flat-rate boxes (the cutting files are here), which is twice last year’s quantity and I hope that’s not too adventurous. (Advent-urous?)

If this holiday season is a roller coaster, October is the chain hill. And the anticipation is kinda getting to me.