Tales from the Grip: A cable car Christmas tale

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For the past several years, I’ve been fortunate to be involved in what has become a holiday tradition at the Cable Car Division–decorating a cable car for the holidays. In previous years, this was a real grass-roots affair, with the costs being borne by the gripmen and conductors, for the simple joy of it.

I’m single with no kids, so decorating has never been necessary in my personal life. I haven’t had to deal with the crowds or the hassle of running around to find ornaments and garlands, jostling through aisles crammed with Santa hats and angels and stockings with tinny muzak renditions of Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer from a guitar-waving Santa wearing sunglasses and a Hawaiian shirt. No, I haven’t had to deal with all that…until now.

Now, I am part of the teeming masses, searching for that perfect angel, wondering why they don’t make extension cords in lengths that I can actually use, debating between chasing lights or blinking lights, tracking down the ultimate fake poinsettia plant.

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