Christmas Tree

Gene Steele

Pemberville, Ohio 

When you live by yourself, you develop habits and living styles that don’t align with the Ozzie & Harriet’s. And so it came to be that my house did not have a Christmas tree during the Christmas season. Well, a new lady friend changed that. My friend wanted a Christmas tree with all the trimmings. I was okay with it as long as she did it herself, from picking out the lights, bulbs, tree, and stand, to  most importantly keeping the tree well watered so as not to burn the house down.

My sole duty was to train the dog to not fertilize or water the handy new indoor plumbing. I figured I had responsibility for the hard and dangerous part of this deal.

Soon after, I walked into the house and was overcome with the scent of Pine-Sol. I found a 4 foot tall green tree with lights and ornaments on my glass-top kitchen table now sitting in the middle of the living room. 

The dog and I took one look at another thinking I got the better end of this deal!

Covering the tree stand and table is a white felt cloth with gold trim. Pulling the cloth back exposes a nice red stand nearly full of water. Perfect.

Over the course of the next several days the tree grew more and more limp. I tell the caretaker of this kindling that it is once again in need of water. On about day 5 or 6 when I came home from work the Christmas tree looked sad, really, really sad. I walked over and reached for the white felt cloth to check the water container when I noticed green spots all over the white felt. What?????

Then a green drop fell from a leaf. Reaching to where the green drop fell, I feel a wetness, my fingers now have a slimy green coating on them. The tree, a Wal-Mart artificial made of paper, had sucked up several gallons of water.  It could have been used to slap and stomp out a good sized fire. 

There was never a threat it would go to flame…..


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