Reply Sat 29 Nov, 2008 10:32 pm
So since Thanksgiving has passed, my wife wanted to put up a Christmas tree. Last year we did a real one. I was against a real one, but at least we bought it from the local Kiwanis club, so profits went to charity.

Anyways, this year we are going to be away from home over the holidays, so decided it would be no fun to come back to a dead tree. So we went to Lowes, and found a nice 7.5' fake tree on sale. Then we had to stop next door at Walmart to get some new ornaments. Apparently the ones we used last year are no longer good. I didn't realize that ornaments have such a short shelf-life. Of course I didn't realize women's clothes have a short shelf life either. I haven't noticed this limitation in my own clothes.

Finally, I got the honor of picking out the color of star (which I don't care about) to grace the top of the tree (which I also don't care about). My wife likes it when I have an opinion on things she is interested in. (Yet when I ask her if she thinks I should use a negative margin or absolute positioning to style a website, she offers no opinion).

So now we are back home, and have the tree all assembled and decorated. Glad it's over with. This got me thinking, I don't ever really remember enjoying decorating the Christmas tree. Is that abnormal? Don't get me wrong, I love the holiday, spending time with my family and friends, and eating cookies. I used to enjoy the gift giving/receiving as well. (Lately, I can't help but think I would rather just save up and buy myself something I really want, as opposed to splitting the money on 10 gifts for other people, and receive back 10 smaller gifts that I don't really want, because I had to think of something in a small price range. But thats a whole other story). I just simply don't see a point to the decorating. So what about you guys? Do you enjoy decorating? Did you enjoy it as a kid?

Here is a blurry picture from my cell phone, if anyone cares:
http://photos-h.ak.fbcdn.net/photos-ak-snc1/v775/127/51/1367430361/n1367430361_155399_8089.jpg


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edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Sat 29 Nov, 2008 10:55 pm
We decorate some each year. Not as much, however. It's not Christmas without a few lights and decorations.
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Sat 29 Nov, 2008 11:00 pm
@Nick Ashley,
ADORED it as a kid...and our ornaments had a VERY long shelf life!!!

The tinsel and stuff had to be renewed sometimes...but I loved bringing out the ornaments (and fairy lights) and decorating what was, for years, a real tree.

I don't give a damn, now...but if other people enjoy their trees, I am very happy to enjoy them too.

If I have people over at Christmas, I have a nice little cane tree...painted gold....about two feet high...and a few ornaments that the cats haven't raided because they thought they made nice toys....but otherwise I don't bother.


One year, there was a thing in the shops for really big, fake trees, with (is it carbon fibre?) lights...you know the very small fibres where the light shines out of the very end....intermingled with the fake pine needles.

They coruscated wildly in a rainbow of colours.

Since I live a few stories up overlooking a major intersection of two major highways, I thought it would be fun to have such a monstrosity in my window for people to look at while stuck at the lights.

I thought the tasteless and children could ooh and aaah, and the critical could have a fabulous time looking down their noses. A true win win!!


Unfortunately, when I went back to buy one, they had all gone, and I have never seen them again.

I do enjoy giving lovely tree ornaments as small christmas gifts to those who treasure such things. And I am among those who love to go and see those mad streets where everybody is busy destroying the planet with outregeous displays of Christmas lights...I guess deep down I am a tasteless and a child.

We have a whole village in the hills which does the lights thing....we tried to go up and look a few years ago, but the car broke down, and, after several harrowing adventures, we managed to talk the tow truck man to drive us into the Lobethal garage (there were an illegal number of us) and we jumped in front of a bus full of elderly, retired, Greek nuns and hijacked them to take us back to the city. So we saw, like, two houses. But the Greek nuns were fun cos we got them singing christmas carols in English.


There is also a brewery site which does a great display for the kids....it was flooded a few years back

http://able2know.org/topic/63072-1


I have been the victim of sundry admin staff through my working years with truly HORRENDOUS taste in christmas ornaments.....these horrors would be distributed through the place...and were ritually binned whan said admin person left.

Imagine the collective horror when she considered coming back!!!

But re your obvious lack of gruntlement re the clothes and decoration thing....to be fair, it is easier to like a colour than know all about margins!!!

(Unless one is colour blind).

But I DO get the christmas bah humbug thing!



Nick Ashley
 
  1  
Reply Sat 29 Nov, 2008 11:01 pm
@edgarblythe,
I admit I do enjoy seeing others outside decorations while I'm driving around. I can't bring myself to put up our own, though. I imagine once I have kids this will change. All year long my wife and I try to turn off lights when we leave the room, and conserve electricity as best we can. Seems odd to then turn around and plug in a ton of lights outside our house for hours at a time, just for others to see. Do they make decorations that solar charge during the day, then run at night? Seems that would make sense to me, but the cost might not outweigh the benefits.
Nick Ashley
 
  1  
Reply Sat 29 Nov, 2008 11:09 pm
@dlowan,
Quote:
is it carbon fibre?

I believe you are thinking of fiber-optic.

Yeah, of course my comparison to programming and picking out the tree topper aren't exactly valid. I just think its funny when she asks me those types of questions. She gets tired of me always saying "I don't care" or "whatever". So I make a conscious effort to have an opinion. However I have a standard thought process for picking these things, because I honestly don't care (and I'm not joking here):
1. The cheapest one.
2. If number 1 isn't valid, then whichever one I think Leah will like best
3. If I can't guess for number 2, then the easiest/closest choice
4. If all else fails, the one on the left, or the first one alphabetically
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Sat 29 Nov, 2008 11:11 pm
We don't keep the lights on all night long. When we go to bed, so does everything else.
0 Replies
 
Nick Ashley
 
  1  
Reply Sat 29 Nov, 2008 11:19 pm
@dlowan,
Quote:
But I DO get the christmas bah humbug thing!

Also, It's funny that you mention Bah humbug. That is actually a Christmas memory I am very fond of. My grandparents used to buy tickets for the entire family to all go and see A Christmas Carol at the Omaha Playhouse every year. I enjoyed seeing the play year after year, and discussing how the actors did as compared to the previous year. Most the leads stayed the same, but it was a major deal when the kid that played Tiny Tim grew too old to play the role, and when the guy who played Scrooge grew too old to play the role.
Seed
 
  1  
Reply Sat 29 Nov, 2008 11:29 pm
oh man did I ever love it as a kid. I always wanted to be the person to the put the star on the tree. But that was saved for my dad who usually just sat back the rest of the time and laughed at me and my sister as we complied all the ornaments mostly in one section of the tree. As for leaving the lights on, we always turned them off, but we would leave them on during Christmas Eve. I was always so giddy when they were left on over night because I knew it was showing Santa where to put all the awesome presents!

Every year my mom would have me and my sister make one of our own so we could remember the years past easier. I loved it so much. But as I grew older it became more of a chore, and I could sense in my mothers pushing of us to help her decorate the tree that it was something that she was trying to use to keep us together as a family. Not that we ever really drifted apart or anything.

Now that I am an adult I dont really put up a tree. At least I haven't put on up since I have been on my own. I really haven't had a real holiday season by myself since I have been on my own. I love going back home though and helping my mother put up the tree. Though I am rarely home to help her, if she knows I am going to be home around the holidays she waits for me to come home before putting the tree up.
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Sat 29 Nov, 2008 11:36 pm
@Nick Ashley,
Nick Ashley wrote:

So I make a conscious effort to have an opinion. However I have a standard thought process for picking these things, because I honestly don't care (and I'm not joking here):
1. The cheapest one.
2. If number 1 isn't valid, then whichever one I think Leah will like best
3. If I can't guess for number 2, then the easiest/closest choice
4. If all else fails, the one on the left, or the first one alphabetically




Oh my!!!! Has she twigged? If so, did you survive?


Fibre-optic. Yes!
mac11
 
  1  
Reply Sat 29 Nov, 2008 11:36 pm
@Nick Ashley,
Nick, I never have a tree, though I usually get around to putting out the few decorations that I own. Maybe next week, if the mood strikes me. I like the gift-giving - when I know it's something that will please the receiver. And mostly, I bake cookies for gifts, so I can be fairly certain that everyone will be pleased. The rest of it doesn't mean a thing to me. It's fun to get together with family, but we do that now and then for no reason anyway.

I probably have my somewhat bah-humbug attitude from stage-managing Christmas plays for 15+ years at various theaters. When you start up with Scrooge and all that in October, you're not much in the mood by the time the holiday rolls around.
Seed
 
  1  
Reply Sat 29 Nov, 2008 11:39 pm
@mac11,
Quote:
When you start up with Scrooge and all that in October, you're not much in the mood by the time the holiday rolls around.


I think that is how the general public feels when you start seeing advertisements and hearing Christmas songs before Halloween even rolls around
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Sat 29 Nov, 2008 11:41 pm
@Nick Ashley,
Nick Ashley wrote:

Quote:
But I DO get the christmas bah humbug thing!

Also, It's funny that you mention Bah humbug. That is actually a Christmas memory I am very fond of. My grandparents used to buy tickets for the entire family to all go and see A Christmas Carol at the Omaha Playhouse every year. I enjoyed seeing the play year after year, and discussing how the actors did as compared to the previous year. Most the leads stayed the same, but it was a major deal when the kid that played Tiny Tim grew too old to play the role, and when the guy who played Scrooge grew too old to play the role.


That's how Peter Pan once was for squillions of English children!!

For us, as kids, it was the Christmas Pageant.

Nick Ashley
 
  1  
Reply Sun 30 Nov, 2008 12:05 am
@dlowan,
Hold on, looking up definition of twigged...

Yeah, she knows. During one of our early arguments on the subject I said something to the effect of "...but if I don't care, then I might as well be randomly choosing between the two" to which she replied that it would be better then nothing.

Of course there were underlying issues regarding expressing appreciation, and communication that we worked out (or constantly work on, anyways...) Since then she tries to not ask my opinion unless she really wants it (no more asking what color shoes to wear, then wearing the opposite of what I pick). And I try to give an opinion that she will accept (as opposed to always answering "pizza" when she asks what I want for dinner, even when that always sounds good)

Now when I resort to using my algorithm, it is more of a joke between us.
Seed
 
  1  
Reply Sun 30 Nov, 2008 12:06 am
@dlowan,
dlowan wrote:

Nick Ashley wrote:

Quote:
But I DO get the christmas bah humbug thing!

Also, It's funny that you mention Bah humbug. That is actually a Christmas memory I am very fond of. My grandparents used to buy tickets for the entire family to all go and see A Christmas Carol at the Omaha Playhouse every year. I enjoyed seeing the play year after year, and discussing how the actors did as compared to the previous year. Most the leads stayed the same, but it was a major deal when the kid that played Tiny Tim grew too old to play the role, and when the guy who played Scrooge grew too old to play the role.


That's how Peter Pan once was for squillions of English children!!

For us, as kids, it was the Christmas Pageant.




I was never a really big fan of the Christmas Carol. I dont know why. I mean we watched it almost every year without fail. I just never really cared that much about it.

I was always more worried about missing the Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer cartoons or How the Grinch Stole Christmas
Nick Ashley
 
  1  
Reply Sun 30 Nov, 2008 12:10 am
@Seed,
Ahh yeah, the cartoons were great. Of course now I watch the Grinch movie with Jim Carrey as opposed to the cartoon, and also 'The Elf" with Will Ferrell.
Seed
 
  1  
Reply Sun 30 Nov, 2008 12:13 am
@Nick Ashley,
the Jim Carrey movie was good, but nothing will ever beat the original cartoon. Hands down.

And yes, Elf gives me goose bumps every time I watch it.

swirly twirly gum drop forest
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Sun 30 Nov, 2008 12:34 am
@Nick Ashley,
Nick Ashley wrote:

Hold on, looking up definition of twigged...

Yeah, she knows. During one of our early arguments on the subject I said something to the effect of "...but if I don't care, then I might as well be randomly choosing between the two" to which she replied that it would be better then nothing.

Of course there were underlying issues regarding expressing appreciation, and communication that we worked out (or constantly work on, anyways...) Since then she tries to not ask my opinion unless she really wants it (no more asking what color shoes to wear, then wearing the opposite of what I pick). And I try to give an opinion that she will accept (as opposed to always answering "pizza" when she asks what I want for dinner, even when that always sounds good)

Now when I resort to using my algorithm, it is more of a joke between us.



Those sorts of jokes are fun!!!

Trust a techie to choose a goddamn algorithm.

0 Replies
 
Mr Stillwater
 
  1  
Reply Sun 30 Nov, 2008 03:42 am
Quote:
But I DO get the christmas bah humbug thing!


Dragged out of the shopping centre by my children yesterday. All I did was point out to Santa-Satan that he was a 'fat bastard' who 'would pay dearly'. I blame the carols, those endless, endless, endless, goddamed carols.
0 Replies
 
roger
 
  2  
Reply Sun 30 Nov, 2008 04:06 am
My best decorating effort involved a 20mm cannon cartridge and a leafless cottonwood tree. For several years, my annual Christmas pun was "A cartridge in a bare tree." Somebody finally stole it.

On opinions, don't put so much effort into them. They are going to be rejected, anyway, so just consider them to be facilitators of conversation, like saying um, and yes at what you judge to be the appropriate places.
0 Replies
 
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Sun 30 Nov, 2008 10:17 am
I have a Santa rope light sculpture that I hang in the window every year.



http://www.cheap-christmas-decorations.co.uk/acatalog/premier_santa_window_silhouette_rope_light.jpg

If I'm not in the mood, that's all I do. Sometimes when nostalgia hits me, I drag out the 3 ft table top fake tree and hang the ornaments on it. The only good thing about doing that is the walk down memory lane as I hang each ornament. Most of my ornaments were either handmade by some crafty people at work or were purchased by my dad and mailed to me. I used to make my own ornaments out of yarn pom-poms after my cats taught me that the best thing about those glass ornaments is how far they can be batted about before they shatter. I gave up on the yarn pom-poms now that I don't have cats.

The only trouble with doing the tree thing is having to pack it all up again for the next year so I don't do it very often. I'd rather just buy a plain real pine wreath and enjoy the aroma.
 

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