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1. Never, ever, buy a plastic tree. This is the cardinal rule of Christmas trees. It’s non-negotiable.
Thoroughly chilled, we all trooped inside the old farmhouse to where my mother’s friend had a big pot of hot chocolate prepared for us, and candy canes to melt into it.
1. What one word best sums up the spirit of Christmas to your mind?
2. Do you associate the scent of evergreens with Christmas?
3. Do you think the purchase of a plastic Christmas tree is as conducive to tradition-building as the hunt for the perfect real tree?
In the beginning there was nothing, and it exploded.
Terry Pratchett, (on the big bang theory)
As the saying goes:
Semper ubi sububi in caput tuum.
GALLIA est omnis divisa in partes tres.
And yet I too can show our beloved readers how easy it is to conjure a theory. The end result will prove, in no uncertain terms, that ultimately we can make no distinction at all between trees during Christmas, or anything else for that matter.
In 1930 the U.S.-based Addis Brush Company created the first artificial Christmas tree made from brush bristles. The company used the same machinery that it used to manufacture toilet brushes. The trees were made from the same animal-hair bristles used in the brushes, save they were dyed green.
In a report on toilet flappers for the California Urban Water Conservation Council, John Koeller, P.E. wrote, In the early 1990s, a change in the dominant consumer method of "bowl cleaning" or "sanitizing" occurred. Whereas previously, consumers had been using in-bowl cleaners that hung on the side of the bowl and dispensed chemical(s) directly into the bowl as the toilet was flushed, in the early 1990s, the chemical manufacturers began to successfully market a more "convenient" product to achieve the same goal. This product was the in-tank drop-in tablet that slowly dissolved in the tank water. Consumers dropped the tablet in the tank water and were no longer required to touch the bowl. This type of product is now manufactured by several firms and now dominates the market for bowl cleaners.
Are you then conceding the debate? For surely if we can make no distinction between trees during Christmas, fake trees cannot be found to be more in line with the holiday spirit than real trees.
I will magnanimously ignore my opponent's toilet-fetish and proceed with my argument, lest I be drawn into the oubliette my opponent would like you to believe is the Christmassy spirit.
(i) Christmas = Mall Santa + Film + Song + PVC tree
----------------------------------------- = 0
(Mall Santa + Film + Song + PVC tree)
(iii) If the value of these fake items were 0, then inevitably Christmas would also equal 0.
iv) Value of PVC in house must be > 1 for Christmas to have value.
I sort of campaign to help genuinely inquisitive people get past the falsely promoted idea that the towers are for cellphones, by the way. They’re simply not; they’re for destroying the atmosphere and for making everyone sick. They’re also used to target individuals in the population in conjunction with GPS.
The truth is that we worship the representation of ideals. Christmas itself being a symbol. A fake tree is precisely that, not a ill-begotten reminder of the isolation, undignified and murderous aspects of life, like a real tree. But a representation, lovingly crafted by Chinese sweat-shop workers. Let us not forget that the jobs created by the PVC industry also help to alleviate poverty and provide valuable liquidity in the present economic crunch.
I judge the winner of this debate to be Oscicate as he was able to argue his (imo more difficult side) with humor almost poetic lightness. While Americandingbat was able to compose her rebuttals with love and care, she seemed to be in the reactive and trailing-behind more than not. Though I still dont believe in having artificial Christmas trees, it was Oscitate who set the tone of the debate from start to finish.
First of all, sincere congratulations to both fighters. I hope you had as much fun debating that as I/we had reading it. I laughed out loud several times and really enjoyed the debate. Great job making it fun and entertaining for me - and hopefully for all of us.
I’ve summarized the major points made by each fighter:
birth vs. death
representation of materialism
negative consequences of tree-choosing ritual
spirit of family unity
they’re all real (all matter is the same)
quality time setting up fake tree
questionable use of “oubliette”
Christmas is fake
proper treatment of scraggly trees
dangers of fake trees
environmental damages of fake tree manufacture
human suffering associated with making fake trees
rebuttal to “all matter is the same” (great!!)
fake trees from toilet brushes
refutation of use of “oubliette”
rebuttal of mathematic theory
toilet brush conspiracy
trees aren’t sentient
fake tree= cheap imitation symbol
Therefore, americandingbat wins by two “points.”
Actually, though, I wish I could give a win to both of you. In my opinion this debate was a win for all of us who had the pleasure of reading it.
Sorry I'm so late with an answer.
For Oscitate v Americandingbat:
ADB won this debate on two points mainly.
First, a very solid presentation of the merits of selecting, preparing, and keeping a real tree. Arguments for the different merits of a fake tree from Oscitate seemed far less sincere and didn't resonate all that well.
Second, toilet brushes. The semi-serious conspiracy angle used to work up to the toilet brush revelation was risky, but the "punchline" completely justified it. It looked like ADB was letting having fun get in the way of winning the debate, I wondered where it was going, and bam, out of nowhere come toilet brushes. It was a perfectly smooth move from absurdity to relevance and it made the point stick. Then oscitate just wrote it off and let it stand.
If Oscitate could have forced the issue of killing trees better and the pagan origins of Christmas it might have made a difference, but Oscitate actually undermined that briefly late in the debate by reducing trees to stardust, taking away the noble distinction that organic chemical compounds are afforded over inorganic ones which is generally presumed by organic brains and thus making them no more worthy of preservation.