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December 13, 2013

FRIDAY: Star Wars and the Christmas tree

It’s official. Epic music is a must for putting up a Christmas tree.

Last year, I was visiting my cousins one cold morning when they decided to put up the family Christmas tree. The fake tree had been hibernating all summer in the attic. I don’t think I blame it. If I had no responsibilities from New Years until Thanksgiving, I’d probably stay in the attic too.

But its time had come. Two of us girls wheedled a younger cousin, one of the guys, into hauling the tree’s… boughs? Can you really call them that? out from their hidey-hole. And then we faced the ultimate question of the tree project.

What music should be played in the background?

If you’re the type who doesn’t like background noise, the question’s easy. But some of us require something to block out the sound of impending doom – because if the house is quiet, something’s wrong. Attention, teens: This is a great reason for your folks to let your band practice in the garage.

At first, we couldn’t decide on a playlist. Carols? Those are too cliché for Christmas. Or so we concluded. I never said we were conventional.

The music on my cousin’s portable player came up for discussion. Owl City? We love American pop music, but it just didn’t seem quite right for a Christmas party. Swedish synthpop was out, too.

We settled on the soundtrack to the movie “Star Wars: A New Hope.” Don’t ask me how we arrived at that choice.

Cue the epic John Williams intro as the tree’s base was set into place. The ominous Darth Vader theme as its boughs (?) gradually took their normal shape. The optimistic sounds of Princess Leia’s song as the lights wound their way around the tree. Wouldn’t Leia make a great Mother Mary for a Nativity scene?

It’s not the most common background noise for a Christmas tree party, I’ll admit. But we were halfway through picking out tree ornaments when we heard the strangest song of all. The cantina song.

Steel drums played by aliens. That’s the way to celebrate Christmas.

– Sarah Einselen

Friday editor / Star Wars fan since childhood

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