It's December 1. Time for businesses and communities to haul out the Christmas decorations and brighten our days. Everyone from Macy's to your local deli will have something to offer. But perhaps my favorite holiday decoration in all of New York City is the Mazzola Bakery Christmas Tree, at the corner of Henry and Union in the heart of Carroll Gardens.
Big deal, a Christmas tree, you say. Ah, but you don't understand. This tree stands not on the sidewalk, but one story above the heads of passersby. The trunk is shaved down and snugly stuffed into a metal holder that is bolted to the corner of the brick building, about ten feet off the ground. (You can see the brown brace dead center in the photo above.) The tree is then tied to various posts and poles around it, to steady the fir, and then decorated with lights. This has been going on annually for as long as I can remember.
Placed at such a height, the tree acts as a kind of holiday beacon of joy and delight for people blocks away, in every direction. Seen in the snow, it is quite magical. It is both simple and fantastic.
The folks at Mazzola always tend to take their sweet time getting the tree up. (It takes a lot of doing.) As of today, no preparations are visible. Lost City will keep an eye on the situation as it progresses, because it's fun for me and I have nothing better to do. Well, actually, I have plenty to do. Too much, in fact. But I enjoy this sort of fun makework assignment much better.