Buon Natale, Carlo Brown!

In Spelacchio’s defense, we’ve heard that bald trees have more testosterone.

For all the talk about how great the Roman Empire was — spanning most of Europe through Turkey and even parts of Africa, aqueducts, vomitoriums — it’s easy to forget that Rome is still a place. But, brother, have times been rough for the place that once all roads led to.

The city of Rome paid $57,000 for a Christmas tree that is less evergreen and more Charlie Brown. It’s so scraggly that ashamed locals are referring to it as “spelacchio” (or “baldy and mangy”), “a plucked chicken” and — our favorite — “the toilet brush.”

Somebody even launched a Twitter account for the tree in which Spelacchio (that’s its name now) neurotically compares itself to other city’s trees like an insecure boyfriend. (“What do you mean ‘gay apparel?’ Are you saying this tinsel makes me look gay?”)

In hindsight, maybe Rome was great, but maybe it would still have dignity had Hannibal leveled it with elephants.

Check your Christmas tree for snakes

Here in the U.S., and in countries around the world that try to be America, it’s Christmastime–a sacred holiday filled with celebrating Jesus’ birth by asking people to buy you things. So as we celebrate by binge drinking with friends and family in tacky sweaters, let’s not forget to remain on our guards.

A woman in Melbourne, Australia found a deadly tiger snake slithering in her Christmas tree yesterday. No doubt the snake was there to give the gift of its venom to all the good boys and girls. The woman reportedly called an animal handler, then made herself a cup of tea and watched the thing act like scaly garland in her tree.

The snake was caught, and luckily no humans were harmed. We have no word on whether the snake will live to see Christmas.

A tree pours beer in London

Some holiday magic landed in London last Friday. The bad news is that the holiday cheer is already dried up.

Carlsberg, a brand of beer you’ve probably seen on soccer jerseys, set up a Christmas tree along the Thames River in London on Friday. This wasn’t just any Christmas tree, it came with a gift for everyone: the gift of free beer. For seven hours, Londoners got to drink free beer. We can only assume that this led to other holiday traditions in England, such as throwing up in the street and getting into fistfights.

Here’s hoping for the Christmas miracle to make it here to the U.S.

Squirrels declare war on Christmas

The city of Norwalk, Connecticut is in disarray after one of its most time-honored traditions became a target by our worst enemies: the animals.

Locals are planning to gather at City Hall tonight to watch the annual Christmas tree lighting, but there’s a chance it won’t happen because of sabotage. Workers setting up the tree found that several strands of lights they had recently put up were chewed through by squirrels. The most likely reason is to disrupt the tranquility we feel in holiday traditions, but there’s another side here.

What if the squirrels are chewing away at the wiring to harvest the copper, then sell it back to us to finance their operations?

“Kids, kids, enough … you’re BOTH just horrible”

The war on Christmas, secular Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanzaa has been going for years with no ground being gained whatsoever. Now, more fuel to add to that fire has been added: the city council of Holyoke, Massachusetts, will now decide whether they have a Christmas tree or a Holiday tree.

Here, allow me to decide this for you: You don’t have a Christmas tree. You don’t have a Holiday tree. What you have is a pine tree.

There. You’re welcome. That’ll be 17.50.