Tending bar this year was our head of HR, which I felt was an unfair kind of entrapment. Fortunately three whole drinks isn't quite enough to get me drunk, but it is just enough to get me really enthusiastic...about everything. So when I heard that the decorations were up for grabs after the party, I really let my Christmas Spirit loose.
"Free tree??!! FUCK YEAH!!"
Some of my recent financial challenges threatened to make this a "no tree" year. This would have been tragic. Liam, in particular, would have been heart-broken, but it's the time of year for miracles!
As the less ambitious hoarders gathered up holly branches and poinsettias, I dashed behind the podium where a veritable FOREST of holiday cheer lay waiting. I grabbed the stoutest looking conifer and made my way to the parking lot under a barrage of questions like "What the hell are you going to do with that?" and "Do you have a truck or something?" Who needs a truck when you have a child's blanket, fifty feet of rope, and an Associates Degree in Fire Technology with an emphasis on knot tying? Idiots.
To call my treasure a Christmas "tree" might be a bit misleading. It certainly is tree-like. Maybe a tree-shaped branch is more accurate, but such a modest holiday decoration has it's perks. Transporting it safely on top of a Toyota Corolla being one of them.
The tree wasn't my only prize yesterday. I'd also been given "Turkey Bucks" (a Safeway gift card). I don't know why my work calls it "Turkey Bucks" when you can use it to buy beer. I stopped at the grocery store on the way home and caught two ladies eyeing the holiday catch skillfully strapped to my roof. One of the ladies nudged her friend and motioned toward my car. I didn't hear what she said but I imagine it was something like "Look at that fine specimen of a Christmas tree. What a lucky fella!". Her friend then probably said something like "and a good father too, no doubt!" Then they both laughed with amusement at my good fortune.
As I drove home beaming with pride my path was crossed by a friend of mine who didn't immediately appreciate my tree. She's a petite 5'2" girl and she was walking her Bernese Mountain Dog, so rather than honk I shouted "Hey! Who's walking who!?" This is a hilarious joke every time. She obviously got a kick out of it because she shouted back enviously "Nice Charlie Brown Christmas Tree!" Don't I know it.
When I finally got it home I untied it adeptly and bounded up the stairs to my second floor apartment. I don't have a Christmas tree stand so I thought I was going to have to get creative with a broom and some old shoes, but as luck would have it, light-weight flexible trees like mine have a built in stand if your ceiling is low enough.
Next up: Ornaments