You probably saw a Christmas tree strapped to the roof of every other car the day after Thanksgiving. Discounted trees fly out the doors of hardware and department stores quicker than pants unbuckle after an excessive turkey dinner. I planned to snag one of those door-buster trees on Black Friday but didn't have the most cargo-friendly tree hauler: a 2015 Lexus ES 350.
In my deal-hunting crosshairs was a 7.5-foot-tall, LED-lit artificial tree with 1,433 branch tips on sale for $79 from $199. Even boxed, I wasn't too hopeful the tree would fit in the sedan's trunk because the ES 350 lacks a folding backseat. Knowing it had no chance in the trunk, the plan was to fit the box in the cabin straddled across the backseat and over the reclined front passenger seat.
Then the inevitable happened: the store sold the last tree minutes before I walked in. The last tree standing was a scraggly, hastily assembled floor model on which I made an offer to store management. Deal accepted, but the store simply took the tree off the display rack and stuck it in a shopping cart. Now I have a shopping cart stuffed with two parts of a partially assembled tree, no box and no folding backseat. Ah, yes, the holidays.