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Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Merry Christmas, Meghan Brown

I want a Christmas tree. My multi-faceted argument is as follows: (a) we have street access, which means effortless transporting of the materials in and out of the condo; (b) we have durable concrete floors; and (C) as much as I want one, we don’t have a kitten to bat at the shiny round objects that would hang from our Doug Fir and knock the tree over and ruin the place. Oh, and (d) our non-existent kitten won’t chew on the tree lights and burn himself up; that’s right, we won’t be finding ourselves in the middle of a Chevy Chase movie this Christmas.

Darren’s argument goes like this: (a) we already have three more pieces of furniture than can fit comfortably in our living room; (b) neither of us will want to vacuum the pine needles from the floor after dragging the tree in the house; (c) we don’t own a vacuum, anyway; and (d) we won’t be in San Francisco for Christmas. Oh, and (e) Bah Humbug.

Darren won this quarrel, even though my case was much more realistic and he is Scrooge reincarnated. So we (read: I) removed the same plastic, 24-inch tree from the same cardboard Walgreens box that we did last year. The “tree” comes with lights and tinsel and sad little ornaments that you have to wrap around the “branches” strategically in order to get them to stay. The box reads $9.99 in bold, red letters, right on the front. Instead of a typical-looking stand at the base of the “tree,” a shiny, red synthetic Santa boot steadies it.

Last December, I would have bet six-months’ salary that I wouldn’t be decorating my Charlie Brown tree again this year, but here I am, humming along to the holiday tunes in my head, wrapping paint-chipped ornaments made of tin around “branches” on a “tree” that is held up by a plastic Santa boot. At first it's a happy occasion (“I don’t need materialistic decorations; that’s not what Christmas is about, anyway”), but later that night, when Darren decides to yank our perfectly fine TV from the wall and trade it in for a bigger one at Best Buy and leave me alone in the silent house when we're supposed to be watching a Christmas movie together, I break down.

I wish I’d known a few tears is all it’d take for Darren to give in. I would have played this card a long time ago. Even though our new tree is not real (and from Walgreens, again), it’s a six-foot-tall beauty. Darren plugs it in in the mornings and after work, and he even lights our pine- and cinnamon-scented candles. Turns out he’s not a complete Scrooge.

Now all I need is a kitten.


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  1. Ha ha I love it Meghan!! Now you know for future quarrels :)

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  2. Hey, our tree from last year isn't so bad!! I hope it's still up somewhere in your condo! And, don't knock the red boot for a tree holder - I think it makes the whole presence!!!

    Oh, and, you love Julie Powell. I just had to say it one more time... xoxoxox

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