Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Is it really real?

We rock around a real Christmas tree. It was a holiday tradition for my sister and I to go out with our parents and help pick out and cut down a tree. It has become the same thing for our girls. Full disclosure, my sister's husband's family owns a Christmas tree farm, and you don't want to be the ones caught with the fake tree.

There is no shortage of places to get a real tree, mind you. The Lions Club, the Optimist Club, community organizations with lots around town, Lowes, Wal Mart, etc. Sometimes I'm asked, why don't you get a tree that's already cut? I could go with the Tevye/Fiddler on the Roof answer...TRADITION! (tradition)! And that's part of it. But there is something more basic, that cuts to how I roll.

I'd rather put money in the hands/pockets of friends or family. This is an across the board philosophy. I've got nothing against Starbucks--they have perhaps improved the quality of coffee, nationwide. But I'd rather give my money to Tim Cureton and Rise Up Coffee (plus the coffee is better). Dogfish and Fat Tire are fine beers, which I enjoy drinking. But Geoff DeBisschop and Evolution Craft Brewing Co. are making the best stuff around and they are friends.

I applaud and try to go with the buy local approach as best I can. But supporting friends goes much deeper. Especially when you have talented friends who are doing cool things.

Plato offered up as one possible definition of justice, helping your friends and thwarting your enemies. It would be hard to argue that as a universal principle for mankind (unless you can do so without having any enemies), but in my limited, personal world, I like it. Particularly the first part.

When I can further a tradition and give a fun, meaningful experience to my family and help my friends at the same time... well, that's tinsel on the tree. A real tree.

No comments: