The Sledgehammer – Version 2.0

December 22, 2009

Deck the Halls with Something or Other – A Roundup of Questionable Holiday Decorations

Filed under: Holidays, shopping — Tags: — Brian Lutz @ 1:41 am

As the guy in the red suit on the right is more than happy to remind you, Christmas is only a couple of days away.  It’s the season we wait all year for, the time of year when friends, family and others gather around the cozy little fireplace they build each year out of 12-packs of  Coca-Cola and an LCD television.  From there, they…  Wait, what do you MEAN you don’t build a fireplace out of Coke every year?  How do you even celebrate Christmas without the Fireplace of Coke?  No, I’m NOT crazy enough to use a real fireplace, you know how much of a fire hazard one of those things is?  And do those bricks contain enough caffeinated beverages to keep you awake until New Year’s Day 2013?  Didn’t think so. 

If you haven’t gotten around to doing your Holiday decorating yet , you should probably think about getting it done pretty quickly.  I should probably confess that I haven’t done any yet here, since the last time I tried pulling out the fake Christmas tree that gets stored in the Closet of Oblivion out on the back porch, it had a rather significant string of lights out AND a shockingly large spider which had taken up residence in the box, and I suspect at this point I might as well just get another one (which at this point probably means to grab one on closeout on the 26th.  Fortunately there’s still plenty of options available out there for your decorating.  Unfortunately, most of those options are somewhat less than ideal.  Although I’m probably just a bit late with this one, I thought this might be a good time for a roundup of some of the odd, kitschy, unusual or just plain tacky Christmas decorations that I have observed over the course of the Holiday season.   You will find this roundup after the jump.

As most people do, we’ll start with the tree.  Usually there’s not a whole lot to say on this topic.  Basically, you start with something big, green and coniferous (or vaguely coniferous looking, depending on whether you’re one of the people who will deal with the hassle of a real tree or not.)  Of course, as you might expect, you can find just about anything in gratuitous designer colors these days, and Christmas trees are no exception.  This particular tree seems to have spent the last six months soaking in a vat of bleach.

For the most part, the traditional green color still reigns supreme though.  This makes it kind of hard for a tree to stand out in the crowd.  To combat this problem, why not try a little bit of good old-fashioned FUD? 

Why, that’s a lovely tree you’ve got there pal, it’d be a SHAME if anything bad were to happen to it…

Once you’ve spent hours agonizing over whether you want the fake tree that looks vaguely like Douglas Fir or the fake one that looks vaguely like Noble Fir and come to a final decision, it’s time for some decorating.  Since most people already have about half a zillion ornaments already you’re most likely covered here, but if you need to decorate in a hurry, why not go for a few of the jumbo economy size ornament balls?  I can almost guarantee you that people might not even think you’re compensating for something.

Oh, and don’t forget the ribbons and the bows.  But not just any ribbons or bows will do.  After all, it’s the FUTURE, and the miracles of modern technology have brought us new and exciting ways to cram LEDs into things that we didn’t even know needed LEDs, such as this ribbon. 

And when the Glorious Exaltation of Heaven isn’t enough light for your tree, why not try adding some LEDs and some fiber optics to the angel? 

Of course, some people prefer a good old-fashioned star on top of their tree, but I think someone might have just missed the point on this one.

Merry Christmas to Oil, and to Oil a good night.  To put these in a bit of context, they were located in the Commons on Microsoft campus, near a seating area for a burger place that has something of an old diner/Route 66 theme to it.  This still doesn’t explain the need for thoroughly unlicensed and freakishly huge gas station logos.

Moving away from the tree, we move over to the fireplace (caffeinated or otherwise), where we can stick this handy sign to remind us how many day’s(sic) we have until Christmas.  You probably needed this one about two months ago for it to be of much use.

And of course, don’t forget the stocking.  This fine example comes pre-encrusted with the heavenly visage of the King, complete with rhinestones, LEDs (I think those are practically required by law these days) and a sound chip that plays an annoyingly long clip of “all shook up” every time you look at the thing funny.  I suspect your significant other probably won’t be thanking you very much if you hang this one up by the chimney.

If you’re looking for random Christmas-themed animatronics, there’s plenty of those to be had too, but somehow if it gets to the point where you can get a dozen of the things from your friendly neighborhood gigantic home improvement mega-warehouse, something tells me we’re getting dangerously close to a shark-jumping on this fad.

Even the humble nutcracker, long  a staple of Christmas decorating, seems to have diversified quite a bit lately.  Here we find a couple that seem to have taken on a tropical theme…

And a few that have taken up sports…

And for those rebellious teenagers of yours, there’s even a death metal nutcracker.  Didn’t AC/DC do an album about that one somewhere along the line? 

And as long as you’re decking the halls, why not accessorize the cat while you’re at it?  Sure, fluffy will spend the next three months plotting ways to mangle you beyond recognition while you sleep, but at least you’ll be able to take pictures and stick them on the Internet with badly misspelled captions, right?

And last but not least, we can’t forget about Santa, who seems to have ditched his reindeer in favor of the latest in airblown military hardware.  I’d recommend staying well downrange of this one on Christmas Eve.

And whatever you do, don’t ever, ever, EVER get on Santa’s bad side, or this is what you could find yourself on the wrong end of.  This just might be the meanest looking Santa I’ve ever seen, and he looks like he means BUSINESS this year.  Get on this guy’s bad side, and I suspect you’re going to have a whole heck of a lot more than coal to worry about.  You better watch out, you better not cry, you better not pout, I’m telling you why…  Santa Claus is coming to town, and he’s got it in for you.

I’m sure I could find plenty more of this stuff, but since I’d probably not get this post done until half past Valentine’s Day otherwise, I’ll leave it here for now.  No matter how you’re decorating for the season, have a merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.  And stay on the nice list, OK?


  1. Its pretty amazing what kinds of stuff is marketed these days to sell at Christmas time. Its almost insane! Btw, the fire looked like a tv inside coke display!

    Comment by Chris Stapleton — December 22, 2009 @ 3:42 am

  2. […] 2009:  Deck the Halls With Something Or Other – A Roundup of Questionable Holiday Decorations  […]

    Pingback by Coal is Overrated: The 2010 Sledgehammer Last-Minute Christmas Gift Guide « The Sledgehammer – Version 2.0 — December 22, 2010 @ 2:06 am

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at

%d bloggers like this: