Okay, it's Monday. Can I stop here? The official kick-off of cold & flu season has arrived. In Michigan we have a parade to celebrate the event. Floats with giant hypodermic needles, children dressed as bacteria and viruses, scouting troops tossing handfulls of cough drops into the wheezing crowd. It's all very magical, really.
At any rate, I'll suffer through my first bout, ten rounds, no whining, and get through the week.
We crossed over to the dark side this weekend. Yes, that's right, we bought an artificial Christmas tree. Although I do love the smell of fresh cut pine in my living room, the magic disappears after about a week when the needles begin carpeting the carpet. There's also the minor back pain after trudging through snow, cutting down the perfect tree (which looks more like Charlie Brown's tree when we get it home), and hauling it a mile back to the pick-up spot because children can never find the perfect tree ten feet from the road. And now that spruce is up to $40 a pop, I figure it's time to join the faux Christmas crowd.
Besides, the tree is a cast-off of some pagan ritual anyway. No trees in the manger. Maybe a palm branch. How come we don't have palm trees for Christmas? It would be easier to clean up. Just a hundred or so great big leaves. Then you can save them for Easter. Unless, of course, you opt for the artificial palm tree. Then you'd have to buy artificial dead palm branches for Easter.
Palm trees would bring disastrous results for the Michigan Christmas tree farms. Even more than the deer. Some business, I think it was a golf course, on M-24, the main road shooting up into the Thumb, planted about six full grown palm trees along the road a few years ago. Really. I don't know where he got 'em or how much he paid for the transplant, but he was obviously not the quickest bunny in the roost (check out more at www.mixedmetaphors.com!). The trees wilted sometime around early August, then turned brown before fall. Last time I checked, palm trees aren't supposed to change colors with the seasons. So, he did what any good Michigander would, he spray painted the branches green. I don't make this stuff up. I don't have to. I live in Michigan.
So, since WNIC is already playing 24hrs of Christmas music, let me wish you all a very Merry Christmas. Drag your local ACLU member under the mistletoe and give him a big wet one on the lips. Then charge him with sexual harassment.
Now go out and cut down those palm trees! I'll give you directions to the golf course.