Short Stories

Oh Christmas Tree

As many people know, bachelors seldom have more than two pennies to rub together. After all, it is hard to save your money when you have so many financial obligations at your feet, like: The purchase of alcoholic beverages, Macaroni & Cheese, and junk food. Not to mention having to throw wild parties each and every week (as this IS a moral obligation.)

Being financially impaired as we were, my friend and I would often be stranded around Christmas time with the big day growing near. A present or two for our moms lay about, and of course one for a girlfriend or two we may have been trying to shag, yet not even a single pine needle to be found anywhere in our apartment.

Well, we were clever folk however, and determined not to be thwarted by a lack of funds I would sally forth to a local supermarket during a random weekday where it was my job (and duty as it were) to hand-pick as good a tree as I could possibly find. There I would tear off the bottom half of the tag, and place the tree (cunningly) in the back of all the other trees in preparation for a future purchase (or so thought the Christmas Tree Vice Squad that the supermarket had posted out front to thwart the very likes of me.)

Later on, at about 2 in the morning, my friend and I would return to the unsuspecting supermarket for a purchase of some weekly provisions: Beer, milk, bread, & Macaroni and Cheese (a bachelor’s mead, so to speak.) We would pay for said items and leave the store. However, as my cohort was retrieving the

truck, I was retrieving the tree to which I so lovingly picked out for adoption earlier that day. The truck was brought around and the loading of the merchandise began: One bag of groceries, two bags of groceries, three bags of groceries, one Christmas tree… and off we went with a hasty retreat back to our lair with all our spoils of war.

Back at the apartment we would carefully place the tree in an appropriate location, decorate it with army men (being as we hadn’t any other ornaments) and placed a beer bottle upside-down to serve as a star on top of the tree.

Later, we would pay a visit a parental-unit’s house, all innocent and doe-eyed, and request ever-so-innocently for a mere strand of lights with which to illuminate our radiance-impaired new arrival.

We partook in this ritual each year and with it celebrated the true (our version of true, of course) meaning of Christmas. That of course being, friendship, teamwork, loyalty to a single cause, well concocted plans, and let us not forget, fast getaway cars.