Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The Christmas Tree slaughter has begun!


Generally people wait until the beginning of the year to get rid of their Christmas trees, but this year, it seems to have started earlier... Blame it on the crisis! I know it always shocks people when I tell them the way we usually get rid of our trees in Paris... We simply wait until late at night, open the window, check that no one is coming and throw the freaking tree out of the window!! Dangerous? Yes, a little, probably, but I've never heard of Christmas tree's accidents. The alternative is to wrap it into of of these bags that the NGO Handicap International sells each year; not only you don't have to worry about putting pins everywhere in the staircase, but on top of that part of the bag money goes to a good cause...

55 comments:

  1. That's how I always got rid of the tree too! Only now I have a fake one, so no more tossing the tree out the window. Great photo.

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  2. But not dangerous in our case, because we're only on the 2nd (i.e., 1st) floor, and someone went down to catch it (sort of). But these bags are an excellent idea.
    Still, sad to take the tree down even before New Year's Eve, don't you think?

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  3. Oh GF Alexa... you bit me to it!

    Eric, have you heard of Boxing Day? For me it I say Box Everything Away Day. So once all signs of Christmas are completely removed I can wait for my birthday...:)

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  4. The collection bag idea is a good one. If I had a tree, I guess I'd clip it apart and put it in the yard waste collection bin for pick up.

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  5. So you wrap the tree first then toss it out the freaking window? :D

    You don't have too long to wait Rose!

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  6. I remember that about Paris very well! I always thought it was hilarious. Thank you for bringing back a fun memory!

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  7. Surely you jest! I've heard of poor Grandma getting run over by a reindeer, but never having to dodge out of the way of a tree falling from a third story flat.

    So what happens to the tree after it's chucked? Do little French elves come by at midnight and turn it into crepes and croissants, making the world a yummier place to live?

    Good work, Alexa!

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  8. Suzy, that was my question, too! So then what happens? Do people dodge Christmas trees on the sidewalks as though they were giant dog leavings?

    Michael will not be surprised to find out we have tree recycling programs in place in southern California; it's against the law to leave your tree at the roadside...

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  9. lol...that is the funniest thing I ever heard, Eric. I don't have a tree so no problems of disposal here. But, still can't believe they just chuck them out the window into the street. Congratulations Alexa, GF!!

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  10. No, you don't really do that, do you?! Shocking! We have a big bonfire with ours or others can take theirs to drop off locations to be mulched!

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  11. I wish I could find a tree as sparse as this one. I can hardly hang anything on the so-called perfect trees we are stuck buying. They are so bushy that the ornaments just lay on them like they are ready for a nap.

    Which variety of tree is this?

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  12. How funny!

    In our town, there is a drop off location where you can take your "used" tree and they will make mulch for parks and trails in the area, which is nice for everyone! I'm glad that they don't get "thrown away", but recycled.

    I hope you all had a great Christmas and hope you have a Happy New Year to come!

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  13. As Curly from the three stooges would say: Nyuck, nyuck, nyuck!! : )

    Somebody was in a pretty humorous mood when they let out the well-kept Christmas secrets of the otherwise oh-so-polite-and-buttoned-down French! I can't believe they do that either! I'm highly amused. I'd love to do some 6th story chucking and actually some dodging would be fun, too! Its really funny what we humans do.

    So, Eric, I have to know, too: what happens when they've been ausgechucked? Poor little Noel Orphans shivering on the sidewalks, does anyone give them a home....or......take them whimpering off to the woodchipper?!!

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  14. REALLY?? Good grief, how very 17th century! It puts me in mind of pots of urine being thrown onto the streets from upper windows. Oh please no, surely not? LOL.

    I can't imagine that happening in England, not only because it seems - well... not very social or tidy, community-wise, but also because of the dreaded Health & Safety police, prevalent in our midst. Giggle. I am watching Pride & Prejudice on DVD and, I fear, have picked up the ancient language. LOL !!!!

    Well, Eric, this is so interesting to find how you dispose of the trees. Who then picks up this mess from the street?

    We put the tree into our front garden, then transfer it to the boot of the car and take it to the recycling point. If you live in an apartment, you have to cart the thing down the stairs and dispose of it in the same way. I have never heard of anyone hurling it out of the window! he he. It's quite funny.

    Superb photo by the way. I hope you weren't harmed in the making, by falling trees, kind Sir.... ;)

    Happy Birthday, dear Rose xxx

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  15. How 17th century indeed! Why would Parisians do it a more modern way??? It is after all.....PARIS. Eric , this one cracks me up. I guess if I had hauled one up all the stairs, at this point in the season I would throw that sucker out of the window as well. Hey, I may throw my artificial one down to the basement the same way!
    V

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  16. Lynn, I hope you're watching the Pride and Prejudice with Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle. Whooah!

    Happy birthday, Rose!!

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  17. Out the window?!! Damn! I hope you don't have a large tree! How do people do it if they live at the ground floor? ;)

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  18. Now I know why the airline tickets to Paris are cheap in January! ;)

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  19. This is hilarious, and reminds me of two things. Anyone remember the original cast of "Saturday Night Live" with the Killer Christmas Tree skit? A tree would be in somebody's living room, then it would sneak up behind you while "Oh Tannenbaum" was playing. The tree would jab a branch through its unsuspecting victim, from behind. The funniest one was when the spring-loaded branch on the front of the actor's shirt got stuck and wouldn't spring up. You could see him tugging on the trigger string in his pocket while the whole audience laughed like crazy.

    The other thing I remember was a physician/scientist I worked for at the university. His favorite word was "defenestration", which means throwing somebody out a window.

    Le variation de Paris: defenestrate the killer Christmas tree.

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  20. I thought Belgrade had as copyright on the tree-dropping type of disposal. Good idea with the bags, but are they biodegradable?

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  21. I have often asked myself...what is the best for the environment:
    A fake tree that you use for 10-15 years then recycle the metal bits or a natural one that goes back to Nature every year...
    Putting them into a plastic bag like that and then throwing it on the street for rubbish collection... well that is a sin!
    What did you do with your tree Eric?

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  22. We simply wait until late at night, open the window, check that no one is coming and throw the freaking tree out of the window..

    LOOOOOOL its a joke, right? No?! You really do that? What about the stairs? Probably less dangerous...

    Happy bday again ROSE! I wish u a smashing day.

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  23. Lovely to hear you use the word smashing, Guille! I don't hear it very often anymore but I use it and love it!

    You don't throw your tree like that then Guille? whisper...maybe it's just Eric?....

    Rose mine gets chopped up and recycled (smug smile) - Happy Birthday! again....:)

    Petrea oh yes the Colin Firth one. Do you know I had never seen it! I sat down last night and watched all the episodes back to back oooooohhhhh it's fantastic. I'd seen other productions of course but I can now see why everyone says 'the Colin Firth one'. I can also see why they were anxious to cast him in Bridget Jones. Well, it had to be, didn't it. Ahhhh. I was up til two watching the things! I have one episode left and I'm off to the sofa right now to watch it. Wish you were here with me Petrea! We could snuggle on the sofa cooing over Mr. Firth and the dresses oh the dresses and the speech, the language oh the language...!!! Back later x

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  24. I have the done the same exact thing with my dry as a bone trees for 30 years here in Chicago. I live on the third floor and just opened the living room window it was next to and pushed it out. The mess of needles in the living room and down below was a mess, but better than dragging through the entire apartment and down the flights of stairs on the rear porch.

    I often pitched junk off the porch as well. Old Polish janitor's custom here in Chicago.

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  25. lol Jeff: defenestration! I've not heard that before. How often can one use it though, I wonder? he he... love it.

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  26. No Guille it's not a joke. I've done it several times... And I know a lot of people who do it (the purpose is to avoid putting pins everywhere in the staircase).

    Rose: "What did you do with your tree Eric?" Nothing, I had no tree this year ;)

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  27. No TREE? Said she, sounding like the handbag quote in the Importance of Earnest. Goodness!

    I still can't quite believe this habit of Parisians Eric. Does someone lurk on the streets below to warn passers by or do you just drop it giving a cursory check first from the window? Do you even check at all? LOL and, as I asked before, what happens then? Who picks up the discarded trees?

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  28. Wishing you a very Happy New Year just a tad early, Eric. Since I am away from home, my internet time is rather sporadic, and I was not able to wish a merry Christmas individually to everyone on my blogroll.

    Thanks for all your great work on PDP, and I hope to be able to connect with you again maybe in late spring or early summer, when I travel to France.

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  29. I throw my old Christmas tree out of the window here in San Francisco. No one is shocked though -- hmmmmm, at least, I never thought so until now. I agree Emily, I always thought it was hilarious!

    Christie, Thank you, and Happy New Year to you too.

    Carrie, "Poor little Noel Orphans shivering on the sidewalks" LOL Merci, very funny.

    Guille, No, taking it downstairs is a horrible mess, needles everywhere.

    Love the photo BTW. It looks so rural, not like the city at all. Did you shoot this photo in the burbs?

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  30. Oh, I forgot, Happy Birthday Rose.

    Merci Elisabeth, Happy New Year!

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  31. Can't wait to throw my "Freaking Tree out the window"! You are too funny!

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  32. Is this the same group of PDPers who are into recycling? Has the world turned on its head? Am I in an alternate universe? Back in time? Did somebody mention "pots of urine being thrown onto the streets"? And somebody else mentioned "smashing" too. OMG, the barbarians have come out in Paris. Looking at it from a dog's perspective...the holidays are literally upon us. lol

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  33. LOL Coltrane! Quite right. At least we'll know, now that Eric has given us the heads up!

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  34. In any case, our trees in the UK stay up until the Twelfth Night, which is January 6th. To leave any decorations longer than that is considered bad luck but most of us hang on to the bitter end! Er... not Rose though and she has a good excuse; her birthday.

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  35. There's lots of things I'd like to throw out the window, but I'd probably hit someone and get sued. Here in SF most people put their trees on street corners to be picked up (except for Lois Simon, LOL). I used to cut mine up and put it in plastic bags in the trash. Now I have a little metal tree and just take it apart and put it under the bed.

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  36. Lynn & Petrea -- may I join the P&P party, pretty please? I'll wear the t-shirt my mom gave me for Christmas last year—it says "I [heart] Mr. Darcy"—and you know which Mr. D I [heart]!
    BTW, before I started chucking the tree out the window, in order to avoid leaving a trail of pine needles all over our building I had to cut all the branches off (not easy) & put them in bags, then carry them and the bare tree trunk outside to be collected. I'm loving my fake tree more and more.
    Happy Birthday, Rose!

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  37. Hey guys...
    Thanks so much for all the wonderful wishes. I had a perfect day!

    And Eric thanks for dropping by... I know it wasn't your first visit but it was your first comment ever! :)

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  38. Yes Alexa, let's all wear pretty Empire line cotton dresses and perform downward blushful glances when men utter more than Good Evening to us. Swoon.

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  39. Actually, isn't a P & P party just a FAB idea?

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  40. Nope. I'm always the odd one out on P & P. The 1995 rendition of Mrs. Bennett renders it unwatchable. She is in too many scenes to avoid, and lacks any believable humanity even while she is written to be an embarrassment. Brenda Blethyn got the character spot on in the 2006 film. The movie only suffers because it was confined to two hours, but the casting, generally, was superior. I wish we could remix them to be just right.

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  41. Sounds like a good way to relieve holiday frustration -- tree tossing!
    :-)
    Reminds me of a TV show by Second City comedy troupe (SCTV) that was on in the 1980s, where they began the show by throwing television sets out the windows of an apartment building.

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  42. I haven't seen the 2006 version of P&P but I think I'd like it. Still, Colin Firth could have won me over with one scene, toward the end, where Elizabeth is turning the pages at the piano and he's simply staring at her from across the room. MY GOD. Melt! Just melt. The rest of the show could be awful and still worth watching just to get to that scene.

    Of course I appreciate Ms. Austin's writing and you know I'm terribly erudite. That's really why I read or watch anything. Melting has nothing to do with it. Of course. Ahem.

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  43. P, he's been accused of being a bit too proud of that trick. But what does Hugh Grant know about it, anyway. 6^)

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  44. UsElaine I do agree rather with Mrs. Bennett being a bit too silly and overdramatic for my liking in the production, though I have admired Alison Steadman for years - I used to attend her amateur productions in a tiny theatre in the 70s every month when she was unknown. I did find the portrayal a little too silly; is that what you mean? I haven't seen the 2006 one either but I'd love to.

    Petrea; that scene ooooooh I agree! For me, too, that stare is just spellbinding. I fell in love with him then and there I think. He repeats that stare in Bridget Jones too. Worth the film just for that. My, my...

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  45. **Sigh** I love Pride and Prejudice. I had a videotape of "the Colin Firth one" that I literally wore out. Thankfully, MY dear "Mr. Darcy"/hubby bought me the DVD for Christmas one year. It was and is lovely!! But I do have to say I like the one with Keira Knightly as well, the "transcendently, incandescently happy" scene is enough to make anyone swoon!! Lynn, you'll have to see that one and tell us what you think of the different portrayals!

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  46. Hugh Grant is just jealous.

    Every woman wants to receive that stare from a man we're attracted, that's why we like the scene so much. (We don't want to receive that stare from an icky man. Eeuw.)

    Firth is perfectly capable of playing a creep as well. See "Shakespeare in Love."

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  47. lol yes I recall S in Love Petrea!

    That stare... wow. No not from an icky man LOL.

    Christie I must try to get that DVD - I haven't seen the Keira one.

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