Hallmark, the company that invented Christmas with its Oscar-winning vault of holiday films, recalled 4,500 Frosted Balsam soy candles on December 20 after several of the candles, which were encased in glass, shattered and caused lacerations and fire damage to nearby objects. The resulting small fires, like the candles, reportedly did not smell at all like balsam.
While it would be easy to blame this recall on faulty manufacturing, one really has to ask oneself if this candle isn’t just another plot point in a Hallmark movie or a metaphor about the state of the holiday spirit. Is the glass around the candle, which is holding together a signature holiday scent, a reminder that people are also shattering under pressure to be merrier? Is the shattering candle another tool of the elf surveillance state? For all anyone knows, the candles may have shattered because the owner said “Happy Holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas.” Santa could have been doling them out to those on his nice list, perhaps because their owners just weren’t celebrating Christmas sufficiently enough to deserve a functional candle and a vaguely pine-smelling home.