The Horizontal Christmas Tree

xmas tree horizontal

It’s never, ever, ever good when you get that urgent Christmas tree catastrophe call.

Text last Monday:  The Christmas tree fell.  Come home now.

I’ve received that communique twice in my life.

I like pretty big Christmas trees; we have two.  This year, the small one has about an 8″ diameter trunk.  I screwed the supports into the booger with the same vigor I used to bolt my tires onto my car.  I mean business!  I actually use pliers to twist the metal in – sap oozes down my fingers.  When I was finished, the jessie was standing as straight as Miss Alabama in the Miss American contest.

I evened out the ornaments and gave it a little shake to make sure it was secure.

It stood for days – and then, ker-plunk!

Special ornaments were busted and Fraser fir needles were scattered around like germs from a sneeze.  I’m gonna be vacuuming those dudes up in July.

Why can’t they make a tree stand that can hold a durn tree up?  Would you make Tupperware that couldn’t hold soup???

As if getting the lights to stay on isn’t enough of a challenge, we have to deal with this too!  You can’t buy a Christmas tree stand that is big and sturdy enough to ensure verticality.  Would we try to balance the Statue of Liberty on a thimble?  I think not!  Target, Walmart, Home Depot – HELP US!

xmas tree horizontal 2

I lifted the thing back up, rehung the lights that once lay on the top of the tree but had moved to its waist, and tied her with bobbed wire onto two separate door handles.  If it comes down again, the door frame to my front porch is coming with it, and I’m gonna take it directly to the street – lights, ornaments, garland and all!

Errrrrr…

Deck the Halls, yeah right!

Xmas tree

I had to cut back on decorations this year.  Our house was beginning to look like Christmas had vomited on us.  It was just too, dag-gone, much!

We were moving along fine in our preparations for the holidays – agreed upon what to leave in the attic, outside and mantle all dolled up, the stockings hung by the chimney with, well, care, I guess.  And then, then as the Justin Bieber Christmas CD played its last song, I opened our box of lights for the tree.

I am convinced that Ebenezer Scrooge’s descendents own the factory that manufactures Christmas tree lights.  Him or possibly the Grinch – or perhaps some  unbeliever who likes to see Christians use our savior’s name in an unbecoming manner.  These translucent strands of beauty bring out the ugly in me indeed.

I simply don’t understand.  How can you run a business by making something that has a 50% chance of working?  What if I did that at the Y?  I’m sorry ma’am, only half of the treadmills are working today – you can kick the broken ones, perhaps shake them; here is a fuse, see if you can replace it, maybe that’s the problem.  Good luck!

It would not work!  I couldn’t get away with it!

And to make it worse, there is no rhyme or reason as to when and if they will work.  On strand A, every other light works.  Strand B?  The first 50 are beaming, the next 50 are dark.  Strand C?  All work!  Strand D?  None.

AHHH.

The one I currently hold in my hand works if I hold the right side above my head.  I guess I’ll start it at the top of the tree.  Had one a minute ago that worked if I jiggled (not me, the lights!)

And yet, I would not be surprised if my personal jiggling might somehow flicker them off or on!  Drink orange juice, all come on.  Lick a sucker, they’re out again.  What, what random source is controlling these ornery minions?  Is it Gru?  Vector??  Who is doing this to us?

I finally, finally got them all on, every light was glowing.  We hung our 6,000 ornaments and sat down to admire.  As I smiled, proud of what we’d accomplished, I noticed, that right smack dab in the middle of my Frazier Fir two rows of lights sans light.

Next year, I’m going with Little House on the Prairie: waxing candles to the limbs.  It has to be easier than this.

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