Ginny called me from her cell phone a little while ago. She usually doesn’t call me at work, and I’d asked her yesterday to get me a price quote for Adobe CS (she gets a much better educational discount than I do), so I thought that’s why she was calling. But I was wrong.
“Have you been to Target’s Christmas section lately?” was the first thing she said to me.
“No, because they’re killers,” I said, and it’s true. Because last week (I guess that does qualify as recently) I went to get Christmas storage tubs and was nearly trampled to death by shrieking mobs of middle-aged women in cat sweatshirts waving half-price rolls of wrapping paper and broken Christmas dishes around. After dashing into the fray to look unsuccessfully for a certain kind of stand-up plastic storage tub, I had to hide in a back aisle of the toy section for several minutes to recover from the chaos.
I told her I wasn’t planning on going back into that corner, ever, even when she told me everything was 90% off and started talking about the rolls of wrapping paper for thirty cents. She said she thought maybe this stuff had just gone on sale today, because no one seemed to know about it.
“And you know what I got?” she asked.
She was clearly pretty excited about it. So I asked what it was.
“I got a 6-foot Christmas tree for FIVE DOLLARS!” she announced.
I asked if it was prelit and she said it wasn’t, but still — five dollars for an artificial tree? An artificial tree that was originally more than fifty dollars?
I started to think that I might need a $5 6-foot artificial Christmas tree of my very own.
When I got off the phone with her, I called Dad to ask about something else, and told him about the Amazing $5 Christmas Tree. He was appropriately impressed, and asked if I’d told Mom yet. I hadn’t, so I called her immediately and asked if she’d talked to Ginny, and if so, if Ginny had told her about the Amazing $5 Christmas Tree. Mom didn’t know about it either.
I mentioned that I might need to go and buy myself an Amazing $5 Christmas Tree after work, and she told me not to, because a friend of hers at work had given her extra artificial Christmas tree to us last year, in the hopes that one of us would eventually move out and have a need for it. And then, of course, we have our family artificial Christmas tree, which is starting to have a droopy top branch and may actually be equipped with an automatic star thrower, since our star kept mysteriously taking a header off the top branch every day.
So now there are at least three artificial Christmas trees at my house, and I’m still thinking about getting another one. Because someone might need it! And it’s nearly time to retire the family droopy-branched star-thrower-equipped tree, so then we’d be down to only two artificial Christmas trees. And although I never had any plans of buying an artificial Christmas tree any time in the forseeable future, I am now convinced that I need one and that my heart may cease to beat in my chest if I don’t drive home tonight with an Amazing $5 Christmas Tree banging around in the back of my car.
Then of course one of my coworkers suggested that I buy a whole bunch of them and sell them on ebay in November for $40 each, which would make purchasing an Amazing $5 Christmas Tree today an investment in my future, and really, how can I pass that up?