"If you obey all the rules you miss all the fun." - Katharine Hepburn
Question #49476 posted on 12/31/2008 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

So Christmas just happened and I've been thinking about presents and trees and such. While thinking of this a most excellent question came to my mind. Why do we put presents under the tree? Why not on the tree or at least by the tree? Why is it under?

-The one who got stuck under the tree reaching for a present on the other side.

A: Dear Been There, Done That,

There's no grand story behind the reasoning of placing gifts under the tree. I did read some accounts where gifts were placed inside the tree, possibly starting with the practice of hiding small cakes and treats in the tree. (See also: The Christmas Pickle.)

So...because it saves space? Christmas is crazy enough without the added responsibility of making sure gifts don't get tripped over. It serves as a convenient storage space and makes the house look nearly like a picture print by Currier & Ives.