…My own initiation into the world of artificial Christmas trees came from my friend Ginny, who could no more be bothered with tending a real tree than she could do her own hair. Each year right after Thanksgiving, we pulled her tree out of the storage room in the basement of our apartment building and set it up in her living room. Ginny, a brunette, had a green tree, and her daughter Barbara, a platinum blonde who lived across the hall, a white one. The pictures I took of each of them in front of their Christmas tree, circa Seventies, show a hairdo-and-halo doo-wop blend of artistry and artifice. The trees were decorated purely in pink (Barbara’s) or purple (Ginny’s), enjoyed for four weeks, and summarily whisked from the premises on precisely January 1. The orderly regimen was strangely soothing. In fact, I’m dreaming of a purple tree myself this year. Maybe Ginny was on to something after all.

Country Living Holidays 2004