The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

December 7, 2012

Protect yourself


The Register-Herald

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As the clock ticks down toward Christmas, everything gets ramped up.

There’s an added excitement to the air.

The season got kicked off with the frantic, no-holds-barred Black Friday madness and has been zipping along at a steady pace ever since.

Of course, it’s not all about shopping.

But that same type of frenzy is represented in many everyday occurrences throughout the month of December.

It’s a very busy time of the year.

Unfortunately, this presents a myriad of problems.

As traffic increases, so does the blood pressure of many annoyed drivers on the roads.

Proper time should be allowed to reach your destination, especially during busy times.

In other words, it won’t do you a lot of good to get upset having to navigate through traffic, or blow a gasket if you can’t find a parking place near the entrance of a popular retailer if you arrive at peak shopping times.

Adjust your schedule, if you can.

If not, plan on waiting and walking.

And show your fellow shoppers and motorists a bit of grace.

There’s nothing quite like getting chewed out by a mad-as-a-hornet driver who lays on the horn as you try to change lanes, is there?

It kind of kills the mood, doesn’t it?

Don’t be that guy or gal.

’Tis the season, for thievery too.

Protect yourself by securing your credit cards and checkbooks and look into having security placed on your accounts at your bank, alerting you to bogus purchases.

Hide your own purchases in your locked trunk or in an out-of-sight location in your locked vehicle.

If you are leaving for an extended holiday stay, ask neighbors to check in on your property daily.

And there are the inevitable parties that happen, many times involving alcoholic beverages.

If you choose to take a nip, please plan on having a sober designated driver.

Taking a life needlessly by drunk driving is not a way to celebrate the holiday season.

Christmas time should be a joyful time to spend time with family and friends, while remembering the reason for the season.

Take a few moments out of the busy-ness in the coming weeks to assure yourself that the holidays won’t leave you “harmed and dazed.”