The red-and-green forces of Christmas Creep have evolved: Unseasonal decorations and trees? That’s elves’ play. The new battle in the war for your holiday dollars is being waged on an aural front, by way of Christmas Carols piped merrily over the speakers at various Manhattan Pret a Manger locations.
Customers at the chain eatery reported hearing tunes like “Walking in a Winter Wonderland,” “The Twelve Days of Christmas” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” playing on a loop, reports the New York Post. And it doesn’t appear to be a mistake at just one store — dozens are reportedly warbling a merry tune throughout the day.
“I’ve heard of Christmas in July, but this is August!” said a customer on site at one of the aforementioned merry locations.
Workers say the sleigh bell onslaught has been jingling through plenty of Pret locations, but that there’s no way to simply change the playlist, except to turn the music off entirely. Seems the music is chosen “by corporate” and they can’t access the magic boxes that spin the tunes beyond to shut’em down.
“Even my boss can’t figure out what’s going on,” one worker told the Post. “Corporate decides the music we’re supposed to play, and this is what we got!”
One brave manager made the decision to go silent instead of listen to Whitney Houston singing Christmas classics.
“I shut it off because customers were a little confused,” he explained. “I heard it, and I was like ‘OK, maybe it’ll go away,’ ” he said. “But then we have the little box and after about an hour and a half, I was like, ‘It’s time to go.’
“I love the music, but I just figured… it’s too early.”
We reached out to Pret a Manger for comment and you bet your winter boots we’ll update this post if we hear anything back.