Monday, December 17, 2012

Conserving Happiness by Gluing The Tree

Glue, Cannister and Tree
Celebrate A Different Kind of Christmas Story
Last year, I broke the base off a resin Christmas tree with built-in snow globe that, when you wound it up, played a tune while the branches turned. Replacing it probably wouldn't cost much, but I didn't want a replacement; this one had come from my mom. Also it seems wasteful to toss stuff that can be mended. I put the problem off but finally when we hauled out the holiday decor I gifted myself with the problem of how to fix it.
I've had good luck with "Gorilla Glue"; it seems to have most of the virtues of old-school Superglue and few of the disadvantages. But gluing works better when the pieces are clamped together for the glue to cure; how the heck do you clamp a cred to the base?
The solution was to insert the tree into a cardboard oatmeal cylinder. The tips of the tree dug likely into the cardboard to hold its position. I stacked a couple of cans of soup on top, and that proved the force to hold the piece together while the cylinder kept things aligned.
I then let it all sit for a day and cure. The process worked, and the ornament now looks almost new.
I had resisted the impulse to through it away because:
  • It was shiny
  • It moved
  • It played music
  • It was a gift from my mom.
But through this I Learned A Valuable Lesson: a little glue and a little ingenuity can reduce waste and conserve resources. I don't know if that's a traditional Christmas message, but saving an ornament (and a little cash) it may be something to balance against the Gospel Of Consumption.

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