They’ve started to show up in the neighborhood. The warm weather Christmas display items. Stackable, storable, forgettable. Three such fabricated creatures appeared over the Black Friday weekend. First to arrive was the plastic snowmen. Here in southern Arizona, there is a law that prohibits the building of a real snow man over six inches high, and then only if the measurable snowfall
has been more than one-quarter of an inch in the preceding twenty-four hours. There is a fear that a large snow man when melting, could cause flooded roadways. Bring on the tiny portable snowless snowman. This guy stands out against the rocks and gravel and is heavy enough that he cannot be knocked over by the coyotes or javelinas that come around at night. He stands eighteen inches tall and doesn’t melt.
An enormously popular display item is the inflatable Santa. Folks like him because he moves with the wind and can be stored away in a small box in the off season. The first one to appear this year was the standard single Santa, standing and waving. The one pictured here was inflated on Saturday but the home owners went away for the weekend, and when this picture was taken on Sunday, Santa had become deflated by the situation. It must be embarrassing for a Santa to look like a pile of blankets waiting to be hung up to dry. The only other Christmas creatures to show up in the neighborhood so far, are a pair of wiredeer. The wiredeer, believed to be descendants of Rudolph because of their “bodies so bright,” are covered with tiny white lights head to toe. For me, there’s just something not right about deer, of any kind, feeding on cactus spikes. But, the invasion has just begun. There are more plastic candy canes and aluminum snowflakes to come, and we will let you know when the pride of the neighborhood shows up. The inflatable Santa, riding in an inflatable helicopter, with inflatable blades turning. That is a real, true symbol of the holidays.