CHICAGO — With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, is it going out on a limb to say ’tis no longer the season for Christmas decorations?

While Lincoln Square’s whopper of a community Christmas tree, lit with much fanfare in Giddings Plaza way back on Small Business Saturday, may be the most visible holdout, it’s by no means a lone ranger. There are plenty of lights and baubles still decking many a home across the city.

Lincoln Square’s whopper of a tree survived into February. [All photos DNAinfo/Patty Wetli]

For the record, Lincoln Square’s tree was slated for removal days ago, but landscapers couldn’t get their hands on a lift until Friday, according to Rudy Flores, executive director of the Lincoln Square Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce.

What’s your excuse?

Personally, we don’t mind a little bling lighting up otherwise dreary winter nights, but there are reasons both practical and mythical for pulling the plug on Christmas.

Free Santa. He’s tired of hanging out with the Gingerbread Man.

To wit, certain brands of twinkle lights were not intended for extended use. Their electrical cords can dry out and crack, causing shorts in the wires or electrocution. Worn out wires also pose a fire hazard.

Apart from safety concerns, traditions dating back 200 years peg Jan. 6 as the last hurrah for holiday cheer.

Time to send the reindeer back to the stable.

January 6 (or, some would argue, Jan. 5) is the 12th of the “12 days of Christmas,” according to the blog Apartment Therapy. Traditionally, those who celebrated Christmas would take their trees down on Twelfth Night as part of the celebrations.

The even older practice of Candlemas Day, which marks a trio of milestones in the Christian faith, extends the deadline to Feb. 2, which, allow us to point out, has also passed.

So off with the lights and Santas and reindeer. And that goes for wreaths and pine roping too, because every day they’re left hanging on doors and porch railings brings us one day closer to the apocalypse.

As legend has it, tree-spirits live in the greenery and need to be released once Christmas is over. Failure to follow this custom brings nothing but bad luck: Vegetation won’t bounce back in the spring, thereby endangering our food supply and spelling the end of life as we know it.

But cheer up: It’s only 294 days until Black Friday, when etiquette experts say you can string your lights all over again.

Your greenery will doom us all. Maybe.

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Article source: https://www.dnainfo.com/chicago/20160205/lincoln-square/are-your-christmas-decorations-still-up-february-its-bad-luck