It Must Be Sad To Be A Christmas Tree


Brand spankin' new Christmas ornaments... from the dumpster.

Brand spankin’ new Christmas ornaments… from the dumpster.

Someone threw away a Christmas tree in our dumpster. Not that this, in itself, is very strange: it’s not like it’s Boxing Day or anything. The season is well and appropriately over by now and there have been so many trees put out on the sidewalks that going for a run has turned into a steeplechase.

On the other hand, I’m not used to seeing someone throw away a tree with the lights and ornaments still attached.

Who does that? I mean really?

At first I just sort of looked at the poor thing in astonishment. In the bottom of the dumpster was the plastic box that the ornaments had come in- they were probably brand new three or four weeks ago. It’s not like they go bad or anything.

I hate wastefulness. Partly this is because I am a tightwad and recognize that even cheap ornaments have a small amount of value. Partly this is because I know that those ornaments are going to end up in a landfill for the next 2000 years. And partly I recognize that I live a pretty privileged life and being wasteful is hugely disrespectful to people who are not as privileged as I am.

Throwing away the tree is sad enough, but understandable: the tree dries up and you can’t really save it. But throwing away the ornaments is rude.

I spent about five minutes pulling the ornaments off the tree. I put them back in their original box. I took the tree skirt off because we don’t have one. I took the decorative holiday floral sprays and wrapped them up for next year. There was a handful of mail in the bottom of the ornament packaging including a traffic citation so I know it was my next door neighbors who threw it all away. Sorry honey, you’re still going to have to pay that ticket- throwing it away won’t help. Clearly you have money to burn.

Moments like this are why I don’t feel bad about digging stuff out of the trash. Moments like this are what light a fire under me to turn trash into treasure- because a lot of the time it isn’t that fucking hard.

~ by Gwydhar Gebien on January 12, 2013.

One Response to “It Must Be Sad To Be A Christmas Tree”

  1. […] out that dead string of lights. Or pull a string of lights off the Christmas tree that your neighbors threw away fully decorated.  The only other thing you will need is fishing line and a pair of […]

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