I shlepped the big bag containing the tree upstairs, opened it to see if the base was in there too, and then I went downstairs to get something else. By the time I'd come back up, Himself had climbed inside the bag and settled in.
Later on, as I unwrapped the ornaments to put on the tree, I put the paper on the mantle in a (fairly) organized pile. Since I'd disturbed him by removing the tree parts from the bag, Winter shifted over to the mantle and made himself a nest. That may have perhaps been a little less helpful... as were the kitty swats and nips when I reached in to get more ornaments.
I didn't throw any papers on the floor.
Winter is 11 years old now. He's only the third cat that I've had to live this long. I was a teenager when I had the other two, and they were indoor/outdoor cats (which I suspect helped expedite their aging process). By the time that they turned 10, they were most definitely old. They'd slowed down a lot and they were kind of cranky. Most of all, though, they stopped showing any desire to play long before they turned 10. Both were gone before they turned 13.
I really hope that his playfulness is a sign that he's going to live a lot longer than that.