Each year you will inevitably head to your local store, school or church parking lot and pick out the innocent centerpiece of your holiday selfishness: your Christmas tree. You’ll pay the man with the sad eyes who is dressed in some sort of winter armor before you strap your prize to the roof of your car and bring her home. You’ll saw off one last bit of her trunk—as if cutting her from her life sustaining root system wasn’t enough—and set her in the metal stand, twisting the eye hooks until they are practically piercing her trunk. Yep, she’s all set. Then you’ll bring her into the house, put on some music—maybe even drink a glass of wine or two—and hang lights and ornaments from her quickly decomposing branches. Finally, after you are done tacking on ornaments, twisting the stand into place and tweaking the lights one last time, you’ll take a picture and post it online, thumbing your nose at Mother Nature as you and your friends admire your handy work on Facebook. And to think your profile picture was taken this past summer when you hiked through the woods with some friends. Hiking through the woods? More like stalking your prey!
“What a beautiful tree,” writes Sally.
It’s not a tree anymore, Sally. It’s a Christmas tragedy.
After a day of struggling to soak up water through her trunk, the life begins to drain slowly from her once bright green needles. Soon she will shed her needles as if they were tears. She will barely make it to the Epiphany before you grow tired of cleaning up after her, and so you will undress her and put her on the curb quite unceremoniously.
All she wanted was to feel the winter snow on her branches, but instead some dog will pee on her while she waits for a man to throw her into the back of a truck and turn her into mulch.