‘Tis the Season for Bad Decorations

23 Dec

‘Tis the season for white trash decorating!

One thing I love about Dave’s hometown is that  it’s almost exactly like my hometown except his is in New York and mine is in Pennsylvania.  It’s quite a bit more prosperous than mine was as well.  It’s kind of like his hometown is what mine would be if mine hadn’t shriveled up and died of weary old age years ago. It at least feels like home in a way, even when it’s not really home.  So on the way to his parents’ house for Christmas, I got a real dose of my own hometown loveliness: white trash decorating.

You know what I’m talking about.  Little random crap figures in the yard, Christmas lights that look like someone had a seizure in the middle of throwing them on the bush, and (Lord help us all), those huge, plastic, inflatable snow globe things.  Half of them have been there all year.   The other half are thrown in for good measure at Christmastime. 

Every time i see them, they’re only half-inflated and drowning in a sea of 10 others scattered about the sad, sad lawn.  

This is best case scenario here. Take half those bush lights and toss them to the wind, suck half the air out of the inflatables, and knock a few things over. Then we're in business.

Christmas spirit, indeed.

I’m not really sure why they bother.  Who looks out on a lawn of half blown up life-size snow globes, a few crooked cardboard stands, and a weathered sign that says “North Pole” and thinks they’re doing their part to spread Christmas spirit?   Of course, maybe it’s self-serving.  Maybe it’s a matter of tradition and they don’t think it looks  nice either but it’s what they grew up with so they keep doing it.  

Can you help me understand this?  Are you perhaps one of these people? Why do you do it?  Why do you lug all of that stuff out of your attic, basement, of what-else-have-you only to blow them up halfway with no semblance of order or preconceived strategy?  

I’ve thought about knocking on the door of one of these homes/shacks/trailers and asking why.  I’d be all sly about it and compliment them on the lovely job they’ve done. I’m sure they’re super happy with it and will be glad to tell me all about it.  Or maybe it will just be some guy in his underwear who complains about how his wife told him to do it so he just threw them all out there willy nilly like.  Maybe half-inflated snow globes are just a sign of struggling matrimony in small towns.

I think I probably cracked the code right there. 


6 Responses to “‘Tis the Season for Bad Decorations”

  1. Abby December 23, 2011 at 6:23 pm #

    There’s a house down the street from me…in the barely-there yard surrounding it, I counted 23 of these blowups… nearly half are movable in some way… I’m tempted to pop them each and every time I pass…


    • Jackie December 31, 2011 at 8:27 pm #


      Way to resist the urge. You’re a better woman than I.


  2. Jules December 23, 2011 at 6:34 pm #

    I really do think you’re onto something here…


    • Jackie December 31, 2011 at 8:27 pm #

      I shall submit it for a sociology doctoral thesis.


  3. pickle December 23, 2011 at 6:35 pm #

    I would like to take a moment to mourn my favorite Christmas decoration: in a recent wind storm, a 30 foot tall pine tree blew over. Every year, ever since I can remember, for Christmas it has had lights on it from head to toe (with just enough twinkling lights to warm your heart). To get the lights on, the people would climb up the trunk and use a stick to push the lights out to the end of the branch but now it is gone. Now I get to watch lights timed to music. Cool, just not my good ol’ pine tree.


    • Jackie December 31, 2011 at 8:26 pm #

      Awwww – I LOVE it when people decorate trees outside their houses! What a bummer, but what a great memory you have in it. 🙂


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