Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Tree time (warning: sad at the end.)

So we got the tree up Monday night and Tuesday morning Delia and I decorated it. It turned out pretty well I'd say.

My Mom made us a great tree skirt, it's a white fabric with little presents on it and she quilted it with red metallic thread and put gold rick-rack around the edge and it is just adorable.

I have highlighted a few items of interest on the tree:

First, the green rhinoceros. I bought this at a department store clearance sale when I was about 15 or 16. It's your standard shiny glass ornament but it's shaped like a rhinoceros and it's green. To me it's just not Christmas without the green rhinoceros.

Next, Wonder Woman. We bought her at a garage sale a few years back. I generally am not that fond of merchandising on my tree, i.e. no Mickey Mouse or Spongebob ornaments or whatever, but something about WW just cracks me up. Another exception to this is that we have a few ornaments featuring "Snoopy and that Wittle Pigeon," as Delia puts it. They are plastic, therefore durable, and Delia likes to play with them, so we keep them.

At the bottom is the tree skirt, which I know this is not the best picture of it but at least you see it in its natural habitat.

To the right at the bottom are some ornaments I've labeled "Todd's ornaments." Todd Asay was a friend of mine who disappeared one night in May of 1986. His stuff was still there in his apartment, his bank account intact.

They found Todd's skeletal remains years later, buried in a water-heater box under a shed in his killer's former yard. This was on Christmas Eve day in 1999. He'd been shot to death, maybe after the murderer discovered Todd wasn't a woman. (Tip to men picking up prostitutes: the ones you pick up around the gay clubs might not be women. Just FYI.) The only "good" news is that they did catch his killer. Unfortunately it was after he'd also murdered his estranged wife in a grocery store parking lot. I was at work with my latte and my paper and when I opened the paper, there was the article about Todd, all these years later.

He was a drag queen and a dancer at a female-impersonator club (Darcelle's, it's quite infamous hereabouts) and occasional prostitute. He was also a great guy, a sweet man, funny and smart. One year he and I made Christmas stockings and he made these ornaments out of the scraps. I still have my stocking. Delia plays with the ornaments. I'm not sure when, if, or what I'll tell her about Todd. He would have loved her. He should be here.

I think about him every year around this time, when I unpack the Christmas stuff. It makes the holidays rather bittersweet.


the fruitfemme said...

Found your blog via lesbian familys. Lovely tree--they should be decorated with rememberances even when they are sad.

Maria said...

I found your blog today when I was doing a web search for Todd. We were friends in high school and though we lost touch, I'd wondered about him so often over the years. I then heard the terrible news about his loss when his body was found.

Yep, everything you say of him was true. Funny, talented, and so much more.

Just wanted to say it was nice to hear another memory of him.

Impetua said...

I'm glad you found me, it's nice to hear from someone else who knew him.

Amy said...

Thank you for writing about Todd. I am his cousin and last saw him when I was about 8. He was always one of our favorites because even though he was a little older than us, he always played with us and was so so funny and happy. My parents never told me the whole story about what happened to him, so I finally started searching on the internet. Thank you for remembering him.