This is to be an unabashedly fluffy post, but this is the season of fluff. Even the New York Times indulged in a vacuous piece on designers “zhoosh-ing” trees for clients. I haven’t a clue as to what zhoosh means, it sounds unwholesome, and the results shown were at best predictable.
I have as my “pile” of Internet ephemera has grown to include more and more holiday images, been inclined to pine (pun intended) for the ungainly, unstudied trees of the late 19th -early 20th century.
Perhaps we have lost the charm of just “making do” when trimming a tree, a birds nest here, a Chinese puppet above,a hobgoblin tucked there; the mish-mash approach is far more visually satisfying then the self consciously decorated trees I see here in Tinsletown.
Again, I just have always loved little flags tucked into trees, I have trimmed my own trees in this manner for years. I am still surprised at how many folks assume I am some sort of right wing nationalist zealot.
I also believe you can’t have too many homemade garlands, paper, popped corn, berries, or cones, all delight.
Perhaps the great appeal of these wonky little trees is the fantasy that they were selected and culled by the family enjoying them.
My own tree I am ashamed to say is an artificial “pencil’ tree ( pre-lit, I know, I know…) from Target, a far cry from my fantasy; but from the street, five stories up, it evokes the spirit I so love.
The following sweet image of rugged men around their own little “feather” tree really tickles me. I love the little paper garlands we all were forced to make in grade school.
A Facebook friend posted this clip from 1898, it really is too wonderful not to share.
Perhaps the most poignant image of Christmas is the few days after, my heart has always broken seeing forlorn holiday trees abandoned to the trash heap. My sympathy may stem from my childhood reading of Hans Christian Andersen’s heart-wrenching fairy tale The Fir Tree read it here and weep. When I do have a live tree, I always remember to leave a few ornaments on the tree when I place it on the curb. A fond memento for a happy time.