by Liam W.
Many critics have asked me, “Liam, how do you celebrate the holidays?” Well folks, here is a little insider scoop on my holiday life.
This year, it started with a search for a Christmas tree with my infamous father and my brother, Petie. My dad cleverly fooled us when he told us it would be a quick trip, but we knew better.
First, we ventured right outside the small village near my house to the Christmas Tree Sale that looked as if it were on it’s last legs, though it had just opened a day or two before. It reminded me of SeaLand, right towards the end of its run when it was essentially a pool of dirty water with a few lackadaisical orcas just sort of hanging around it.
Being persistent men though, we hiked into this little outdoor display of Christmas trees that never hit their growth spurts and slowly watched as our hopes got crushed with each new tree and each new price-tag we saw.
It took us perhaps seven minutes of squinting at the price tags for the overpriced shrubs and looking at each-other with displeased expressions before we finally hopped back into the getaway car and made our way to the plan B, a grocery store that I will not name for its own sake.
This place locked their pre-cut trees up in a jail-cell type of cage outside the stores main doors that I don’t think the trees appreciated, though they quietly put up with it. The door to the cage was locked tightly as if there was some sort of national treasure inside.
The three of us walked inside the grocery store and went to the first checkout aisle we could find, interrogating the elderly man wearing an apron about the trees outside and the rationale for locking them up.
To be honest, I am 96% sure this employee standing in the middle of the grocery store had no idea that they were selling Christmas trees outside. The guy had the most confused look on his face that I have ever seen in a man – the look people have on their faces when they are discovering new information.
Eventually though, he called up another employee and explained to him the dilemma. This employee said he could come outside and help us pick out a tree.
The new employee was a more youthful, key-wielding man with dark brown hair and an untied apron to show us he was relaxed and knew how to have a good time. He unlocked the door and let us into the sanctuary of trees.
Walking around, my dad, my brother and I did our very best to feign any knowledge about Christmas trees, as the man stood there waiting for us to pick one. “Ah, the Nordham Fir, good tree,” my dad would express, pretending as if any of us knew the difference between a Nordham Fir and any other type of fir.
“Good fir,” I’d intelligently add. “Thick stump,” my brother, Petie would expertly chime in. I am not sure why we were trying to impress this grocery store worker with our non-existent Christmas tree knowledge, as if us knowing more about the trees would make this guy any more happy about standing out in the cold waiting for us to pick one, but we continued doing so until we found one.
Eventually we picked a beauty out, a real gem, and Petie and I threw her on top of the mini-van and waited for my dad to dole out the cash to the grocery store worker.
Luckily, my dad remembered to bring a thin white rope that we just sort of threw around the tree a couple times and stuck through a window of the car. I have tied shoes tighter than we tied this tree to the car.
We eventually made it home with our tree somehow still on the car. Blasting Christmas music through our minivan radio, we pulled into the driveway, and were met with rejoicing from the rest of the family who were waiting at home.
At this point, I took initiative, ripping my shirt off and grabbing the tree off the roof of the car and chucking it through the window into the living room where it is to be kept for the next few weeks of its life (This sentence is fictionalized, though based off true events).
Later, we decorated the tree with ornaments, many of them abstract homemade pieces made by me and my brothers in our younger days, reminding us all why we never pursued careers in Christmas ornament architecture.
I have since spent the rest of the holiday season watching Tim Allen act in every Christmas movie ever released, besides perhaps 1946’s It’s a Wonderful Life, though I think he may have even made a cameo in that one, despite the fact that it was released prior to his birth.
Anyways, it is set to be another wild Holiday Break, folks, thanks for tuning in.