Selling Christmas Trees Is a Hard Living, Even in Good Conditions

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Three things we learned in the Wall Street Journal's report on the city's tree vendors: 1) Officially, you can sell Christmas trees on city sidewalks without a permit during December, but the cops will look the other way as long as it's after Thanksgiving, which came early this year. 2) People come all the way from Alaska to hawk trees, a trip that is apparently worth it even without this year's long season and mild weather. 3) It is still a damned hard way to make a living, especially if you don't own the operation: "On his first day, he and nine co-workers unloaded 3,000 trees with no gloves, no breaks and no water. The nearest bathroom was four blocks down the street at a Dunkin' Donuts. The other option was a bottle on-site. He estimates that the lump-sum payment amounted to roughly $5 an hour."