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cultural vandal | by maryann johanson

question of the weekend: What is the ideal date to put up your Christmas tree?

Charlie Brown Christmas tree

It’s December 1st, so it’s now officially unavoidable: Christmas is coming, whether you want it to or not. Whether you’re ready for it or not. And inevitably — for those of us who observe the holiday in some fashion or other — comes the dilemma about when to put up the Christmas tree. (Which comes after the other dilemma: Whether to put up a tree at all. I’ve often vacillated, and usually ended up alternating years. This year, since I don’t have my own place, it’s no tree for me.)

In the U.S., some people seem to think that the day after Thanksgiving is the right day, but that always seems way too early, certainly if you have a real tree (which, as everyone knows, is the only proper kind of Christmas tree). But you can’t let it get too late in the season, either, because then it’s just too much madness all at once. I usually would go for somewhere in the week to 10 days before Christmas, usually depending on where the weekend fell in there.

Man, I love Christmas, but I’m exhausting myself just thinking about this.

What is the ideal date to put up your Christmas tree? If you don’t celebrate Christmas, do you mark some other solstice-type observance, and how?
(If you have a suggestion for a QOTD/QOTW, feel free to email me. Responses to this QOTW sent by email will be ignored; please post your responses here.)

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