The cashier at the department store was obviously shocked. She looked about to see if anyone had heard what I had said, hesitant to reply. Eventually, certain she was out of earshot of any of her co-workers and other customers, she responded in almost a whisper. I felt bad for her, but not for what I had intentionally uttered.
We live in a time when we are expected to always say and do what is considered politically correct. Unfortunately, in my case, the do part is easier than the say. It's not that everything that crosses my lips is intentional or well thought out, but in this instance, my remark to the cashier was deliberate and well-intentioned.
Even more unfortunate is that fact that she, as well as almost everyone in the retail world today, was instructed to never, under any circumstances, repeat the words I had spoken for fear of alienating someone.
Was what I said so terrible that she reacted as if some state secret had suddenly been revealed? No. Was she overreacting? Maybe just a little, but it was her job after all. And it was apparently the norm, since I have received similar reactions (maybe not as extreme) in other stores.
What did I say? Just two words, that are considered today to be politically inappropriate: Merry Christmas.
I don't know about you, but I have seen no calendar with the words Happy Holidays printed on the date of December 25, nor do I expect to in the near future. Beyond that, who knows.
I, never concerned about being PC, shall continue to say with sincerity Merry Christmas to one and all.