Unitasker Wednesday: Disturbing decorations and artificial tree spinners

All Unitasker Wednesday posts are jokes — we don’t want you to buy these items, we want you to laugh at their ridiculousness. Enjoy!

In this week before Christmas, I wanted to do a Christams-theme unitasker. It turned out to be a little more difficult than I thought because, although there are a lot of single-use objects that are related to the holiday, almost all of them are decorations. And, decorations aren’t really unitaskers, but rather design and style preferences. For example, this toilet seat cover and rug are decorations:

Sure, they’re totally offensive decorations — depositing one’s “milk and cookies” down Santa’s throat is WRONG — but still they’re just decorations.

I was equally creeped out by the “life size” elf decoration:

The name cracks me up, because “life size” implies that elves are “alive” and have a “life.” (Did you check out the price tag? Wowza. For $150, I really hope it picks up your dry cleaning in addition to being a decoration.)

When push came to shove, I ended up choosing an intriguing unitasker. It’s an artificial tree spinner, and, as its name implies, it spins artificial trees. Why? I HAVE NO IDEA!

Wheeeee! Wheeeeee!

I think it should really be named the ornament flinger, as that is exactly what would happen if I put this thing under my tree. Goodbye strange cowboy snowman from my mom! Oh wait … maybe this artificial tree spinner isn’t a unitasker after all? It’s an ugly ornament unclutterer!

Wheeeee! Wheeeeee!

22 Comments for “Unitasker Wednesday: Disturbing decorations and artificial tree spinners”

  1. posted by Julie on

    Heh! I have a friend who has the tree spinner! It doesn’t “spin” so much as “turn very slowly.” It doesn’t fling off the ornaments, they don’t even move, that’s how slow it turns. It is kinda ridiculous though, and not something I’d ever feel the need to buy.

  2. posted by Sherri on

    Yeah, maybe Rotator would be a better name instead of Spinner. I could see how this would be useful if you would like to see your tree from all angles, but wouldn’t the light cord get all wrapped around the base?

    That Santa toilet is just… wow.

  3. posted by JeCaThRe on

    We get a live tree every year, so no spinning tree stand for me, but if one uses an artificial tree, then this stand is no more a unitasker than a regular artificial tree stand.

    The cord up the middle is what keeps the light strings from getting wrapped around the base.

  4. posted by Bree on

    We were at a Senior Center for a Breakfast with Santa this weekend, and they had one of the oversize trees on a spinner. It looked really cool, it twirled gently and the kids were fascinated. So I think it still qualifies as a decor choice.

  5. posted by Marianne on

    We bought an artificial pre-lit tree several years ago that rotates. We love it. When we decorate the tree, the rotating base is turned on and it makes much easier to put on garland, ribbon and the ornaments. We each stand on a side with a different variety of ornament and put them on as the tree rotates. And even after the tree is decorated, we turn on the rotation so we can see the whole tree. We are ready to purchase another tree next year and a rotating base will be one of the requirements.

  6. posted by Marrena on

    That Santa is very disturbing!

    Big picture, I find it interesting that you consider decorative items design and style preferences, rather than clutter that needs to be pruned (although maybe you were making the distinction about unitaskers alone). I’ve noticed online in my reading on minimalism and uncluttering that there is generally a gender divide when it comes to decor. I’ve noticed that male minimalists tend to cut decor first, and their apartments look like they just moved in yesterday. Everything is strictly utilitarian (gay men’s minimalist decorating being the exception). My view and I think the view of many women is that uncluttering helps to show off one’s sense of style by allowing room for treasured decorative objects to shine.

  7. posted by CM on

    “Milk and cookies,” ewwww. (And is the “Wheee” supposed to be the sound the ornaments make as they spin around?)

  8. posted by Erin on

    Wheeeee! Is the sound of the ornaments as they fling to their death. :)

  9. posted by Lovemyspinner on

    I have had a spinner for 10 years. We love it! It makes it easier to put the ornaments on and take them off. It also allows us to enjoy every ornament we have. I would think that you would like that it allows us to enjoy what we own. One of my favorite things about it is that as it turns the lights go behind the tree and make it look like the lights are twinkling. And it certainly doesn’t spin fast enough to fling anything. The one negative? We can’t put presents under the tree because the branches would touch them.

  10. posted by Henave on

    I’ve never seen a tree spinner or known anyone who has one or heard any reference to one anywhere. I think I need to get out more.

    That elf is seriously creepy. My son wanted the elf on the shelf some years ago and it is small and creepy. The “life-sized” elf is disturbing. I think it is the smile and the eyes. My teenager has a zombie baby that we get out at Halloween and hide around the house to scare each other, but the zombie baby is much less disturbing than the big elf for some reason.

  11. posted by Greg on

    That elf is going to give me nightmares. Seriously.

  12. posted by Jodi on

    I grew up with a cluttered Christmas (took a full day just to bring all the decoration boxes out of storage), so decorations (for me) equal clutter and I don’t decorate at all.

    I’d love to see a how-to post on “simple but elegant” decorations that don’t take up a lot of space (off-season) or time (in-season), because a little decoration might be fun one of these years. :)

  13. posted by susan on

    Jodi I agree I don’t decorate either anymore. I think most decorations are clutter. I used to put up a tree and could not wait for Dec 26th so I could take it down. Now I go out of town every year for Christmas and do not decorate. I have culled my collection and have kept the favorites. They are stored in a plastic box in the empty basement. Some year I may want to decorate a little and it’s a small box.

    I like simple but elegant. I think using natural items like pine boughs, pinecones, holly branches, fresh flowers and few candles is enough. Recyclable and replaceable.

  14. posted by My Inner French Girl on

    Okay, I have to admit — I looooved the tree spinner we had when I was a kid. (Growing up in the Philippines, we never had a real tree, so I’ve only ever known artificial trees and love them. Can’t be bothered with the effort!)

    I loved being able to see all the ornaments, even those that would otherwise be hidden in the “back” of the tree. Plus, I’m just all Miss Christmas (like Ray Liotta in that old episode of “Just Shoot Me”), so nothing is ever too kitschy for me, even tree spinners!

    Erm, except I draw the line at that horrific toilet set. Hideous.

    Salut,
    Marjorie

  15. posted by Brittany on

    Maybe it’s the G&T I just finished after a very, very long day, but reading all of your “Wheeeee! Wheeeeee!”s CRACKED ME UP. I am always appreciated of whimsical silliness but this was just great. What is up with that elf?! Is that what House Elves look like these days?

  16. posted by Jennifer on

    I was actually looking for a tree spinner a few years ago and couldn’t find one. We have LOTS of ornaments and it seems a shame to hang them on the back of the tree where no one will see them. A spinning tree seemed better than a bigger tree. (I considered using less ornaments, but all of our ornaments were made for us or given as gifts to us. I want to use them all every year so the kids remember them and they are meaningful to them when I give them each some upon leaving home.

  17. posted by purpleBee on

    Jodi, an easy way to do uncluttered decorating is to choose 2 colours as your Chrisymas colours for decorating. Then use items you have and a few decoations of food.

    For example, green and white.
    A glass bowl filled with green and white mints. A houseplant decorated with a few white bows

  18. posted by Carmen on

    Maybe the spinner is a unitasker as it only does one thing, but it’s a “requirement” in my mother-in-law’s house. She has literally hundreds of ornaments she’s collected over the years and it would be a shame to show only half of what she puts on the tree. So the spinner slowly turns the tree so we all get to see where she put the ornaments with our names on it!

  19. posted by Nicleau on

    I’ve really enjoyed freeing myself from our holiday decoration clutter. We still get a tree, but we also buy “live” decorations–poinsettias, cedar garland, and a nice wreath for the house. Somehow seeing these natural items in my space feels less like clutter and more like a celebration of the season.

  20. posted by Rebecca on

    Does the idea of a spinning artificial tree make anyone else think of Doctor Who?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mkZZGQdRa3o

  21. posted by Henave on

    I totally forgot about that Doctor Who episode! I have seen a tree spinner before…I’ll have to go back and rewatch that one as it was really good. Thanks for reminding me:)

  22. posted by Kelly on

    I love the idea of a tree spinner, IF you have a lot of beautiful decorations you want to fully appreciate. However, I have about 10 decorations that get hung on the backside of the tree specifically because I find them ugly/tacky, but they were given to us by well-meaning relatives, and thus have sentimental value. I still feel like I’m honoring the sentiment, without messing up the overall decorative effect. So no tree spinner for me, thanks.

    Oh, and that Elf is creepy and those Santa toilet decorations…ick. Isn’t that unsanitary? With so many friends and relatives over for the holidays, someone is bound to sprinkle while they tinkle!

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