I started this entry in a certain fashion, then wiped the slate clean. I often run into this routine of expositional preamble. I have one central idea that I meander towards, grounding it in explanation, backstory. Maybe it’s a habit learned from years of structured writing in school. Perhaps it’s.. oh fuck, I’m doing it again. It’s like being caught monologuing. If only I wasn’t so enraptured by the sound of my own voice in digital ink. Fuck this. I just wanted to say that this year we’re gonna get a Christmas tree, without dousing it in pomposity.
I had a tree once as a kid, for novelty, really. Being Jewish, it certainly wasn’t for cultural reasons. Out of pure jealousy for my gift laden friends, I wanted to know what it felt like looking at a tinselled tree with hope and longing. I’m a January birthday baby, so I convinced my parents to get me a child sized tree and put my birthday presents underneath. It was underwhelming at best. My inner Grinch was slowly fed.
Oddly enough, I’ve decorated a shit ton of trees in my life. Before I worked at my best friend’s parents’ party store, I’d help them out out over the weeks preceding Christmas with endless installations. Malls, the casino, endless events. Armed with cable ties, a ladder and pliers I hung endless wreaths and garlands. Most of them were pre-decorated, but there’d be a ton of cosmetic work to do. Fluffing up branches, making sure baubles were looking their best. Arranging stylized presents around the place. We set up trees of various sizes, sometimes huge enough to necessitate a cherry picker. It was a lot of work, a sentiment that became permanently attached to the holiday at large.
It’s been easy over the years to immediately dismiss Christmas outright. What would be the point. The older I get though, the more I like celebrating things for the sake of fun. Leaning back on curmudgeonly impulses for contrarian means is less appealing as the need to put up appearances diminishes. Why not make the house more colourful? Fairy lights looked great in Stranger Things, why not apply the same aesthetic to our place because we can? As a younger kid before resentment set in, I’d always wanted to celebrate Christmas. I told myself that when I was a father, my family would. The fact that we couldn’t/didn’t was a bugbear that evolved into a humbug. Not having Christmas became not wanting it. Nearing 30, I’ve realised that nothing is holding me back. I’m still not into the more commercial aspects of the holiday, but I’d be hard pressed to have an issue with merriment.
So a small tree it is. We can make some of our own decorations and set it up on the kitchen table. We can celebrate to whatever extent we desire. Simple, fun and pressure-free.
Really though, I’m primarily doing this to put a Star-Lord toy as our angel at the top.