Didn’t you get the memo?

I love the season of the holidays. Finding the perfect tree, breaking out the decorations, and relaxing with a sense of satisfaction that the joyous giving and sharing season is upon us. The colder weather, a chance of snow, a sense of community and family all around.

I’ve always been the person that takes down their tree the DAY AFTER Christmas. Why? Um. Christmas is over come December 26th. The Canadians are doing it right folks, ever heard of Boxing Day? Box up your shit and put it away. No sense in dragging out the season. The new year is just around the corner and let’s have a fresh start when the clock ticks to midnight. This year, however, with little ones in the picture and a husband who prefers leaving the tree and decor up a few days post Christmas, I obliged. Honestly it was still kind of nice, we paid a lot for the tree and it still smelled like pine. I was liking it. The new year came and a few days later the gigantic tree came down and awaited the Boy Scouts of America, curbside.

That weekend I began wondering, “when are these neighbors of mine going to take down their exterior, CLEARLY, Christmas decor?”. I feared the worst. These people had no timetable. They didn’t adhere to the normality of the seasons. They were instead, going to torture me. Let me say this, I absolutely cannot stand exterior decor beyond the season. CANNOT. You people who leave your lights attached to your house well into March? There should be an acutal law against that type of human defiance. A fine imposed. A scarlet “trash” label that gets affixed to your home. This type of behavior is beyond my comprehension. Yes, I get it’s the Northwest and it rains in January and it’s ‘cold’. That is NO EXCUSE! Get off your ass and get to dismantling.

My home office window looks the front of our house and directly across the street is the display of a string or two of icicle lights the neighbors have strung from their gutter. They don’t turn them on anymore, but they are there. Hanging. Yes they are white and yes they blend in mostly with the white gutter. But I don’t care. I can see them, I know they are there. I have disdain for those neighbors. Why? Because of the lights they won’t take down? Yes. It’s that simple. The weird guy that smokes on the porch doesn’t help matters either.  In fact, that guy is HOME ALL DAY, EVERYDAY and all the more reason those lights should be taken down.

They aren’t the only offenders though. The neighbors next door to us have the same awful icicle lights and other houses in the area still have red bows, ornaments hanging from trees in their yard, and various other ornamental yard decor. And most abundant of all is the wreath. About every other house still has one hanging up. Come on people, you are KILLING ME!

I know this sounds like a rant of something completely insignificant. So what if people still have lights and shit up? Who cares? I care. You know why? Because this is slippery slope folks. What ELSE do they have going on in the INSIDE of these houses? I shudder to think.

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green with envy

With the holiday season upon us, it’s hard not to notice the abundance of Christmas tree lots popping up everywhere. Well, I would use the word ‘lots’ rather loosely. A lot of them are, well, in people’s front yards. Now granted, many tree stations (I’m coining the term) are still in grocery store parking lots, abandoned parking lots, etc, however I can’t but notice the influx. It really got me wondering out loud,

  • “Is that really profitable?”
  • “How much are they paying for each tree? “
  • “What’s the profit margin?”
  • “Is this what people are turning to in a down economy?”

Hmm. I can’t quite put it all together. First and foremost, location, location, location. There is a tree station every 3 blocks or so. Competition is quite fierce. So what drives these people to set up shop on the local corner, or rather, in their own front yard? Moreover, who wants to stand out in the cold for hours each afternoon/evening trying to pimp a tree?

Maybe the demand in the market is ever present. I’m wondering, given the down economy, will families still be buying Christmas trees at the same rate that they have in years past? Is a tree one of those things that you purchase regardless of how strapped your financial portfolio? Lots of questions that are in need of answers. I suspect I won’t know these answers unless I pull over to the side of SE Powell Blvd and ask the homeowners (that have been advertising their upcoming tree station for two weeks prior to Thanksgiving) just what gives?