Posts Tagged ‘Holidays’

Media Update 12/16/21

December 16, 2021

Elves (Nisser)

Sometimes, it is really fun to watch fictional horror about people too dumb to live. This is one of those stories. A Danish family from the city decides to spend their Christmas vacation on a remote island that does not see many outsiders. A dangerous secret is unleashed. You can probably guess what it is. The main family is ridiculously dumb and gullible like they are characters from a cautionary fairy tale. Of course, the locals are not much smarter. Still, it is an interesting suspenseful tale that makes allusions to the importance of ecology. I liked the folklore and some of the world-building. Some of the characters were really fun to watch. I recommend this show.

A Boy Called Christmas

I absolutely love world-building and I love different takes on folklore. The past two years I got it from The Christmas Chronicles but this year it is this movie. This is the story of a young boy who travels northward to find the fabled Elfhelm. The titular boy is played by Henry Lawfull and he hits just the right tone of optimism without being too sugary sweet or annoying. Stephen Merchant is excellent as his sidekick, a himbo as only he can play. Maggie Smith is an excellent narrator with a dry sense of humor. Sally Hawkins is darkly villainous but compelling. Zoe Coletti is absolutely insane and I loved her. The special effects are really interesting and they work well with the character designs.

Santa Inc.

I have had a weird experience with this show. I was very close to tapping out after the first episode because the show leans on a lot of tired “adult animation” tropes. Namely, there are a lot of raunchy sex jokes and jokes about drugs. I looked at the reviews on Twitter and saw a lot of anti-semitic bile being spewed and decided to give it another shot out of spite. Basically, it is Succession done in the North Pole. Sarah Silverman stars as a female elf who has been number 3 at the North Pole for years but now wants to make a play to be Santa’s successor. She is a lot of fun in the role and has a lot of heart. Seth Rogen plays a dundering Santa from a long line of Santa’s where the role is passed down as a corporate position. There are a lot of colorful characters but I specifically want to shout out Gabourey Sidibe and Leslie Grossman who play the main character’s best friends. The show is growing on me and there are not that many episodes. I actually recommend this show.

Music of the Week:

Run The Jewels – A Christmas F*cking Miracle

The Sweaterettes – Ugly Sweater Time

The Bodega Brovas – Covid Christmas

TERRORVISION – Our Christmas Song

Mashup of the Week:

MashupChuck – Spiderwebs This Christmas

Weekly Update:
This week’s theme is “Elves of the North”
I watched a ton of YouTube and Twitch
I watched more Doom Patrol Season 3
I watched more Titans Season 3
I watched more Young Justice Season 4
I watched more Stargirl Season 1
I started Bob’s Burgers Season 12
I finished Elementary Season 6
I finished Chucky Season 1
I watched Cat-Women of the Moon (Rifftrax Version)

Thanksgiving 2018

November 24, 2018

Everybody is moving on toward Christmas but I am still recovering from Thanksgiving. I was told on Tuesday that my mother and I would be responsible for cooking the feast for twelve guests. While I have helped with cooking before, I had never taken on so much responsibility for such a big meal. We also had none of the ingredients needed, including the all-important turkey. What is a guy to do in the semi-wild territory of Shepherdstown, WV two days before Thanksgiving? I decided to drive to Walmart, sure that they would be least likely to be out of the supplies I needed. I got to the Walmart in Spring Mills, expecting it to be swarming with people and picked over. It was actually pretty sedate but there was definitely a lot of people in full shopping mode. I made my way through the aisles, trying to figure out where everything was. I got a 24-pound turkey, probably a little too big but oh well.

After hauling the stuff to the car, I drove home feeling like a conquering hero. I usually just do the dishes, something that I am happy to do but I am nervous about cooking for other people. I live alone and I usually only cook for myself. I like it but I do not really have any idea if other people would like it. I was comforted by the fact that my mother would be my partner in crime in the endeavor. I went back to work on a case I was doing paralegal work for, proofreading and checking a complaint that was about to go out. I did not give Thanksgiving another thought until I put the turkey out on the back porch to make sure it would thaw out on time. Of course, it has gotten to below freezing here every night this week.

On Thursday, I got up in the morning with my mother and we found that the turkey was just a little frozen inside. We agreed to change the cooking time and I was relieved that we had gotten up so early (8 AM). We watched the Macy’s Day Thanksgiving Parade as we checked on the turkey, saving everything else to cook later. We sat down to watch a movie (Ocean’s 8) and that is when my poor, tired mother fell asleep. I picked up the ball from there and tin foiled the chicken and, after the movie was over, I lept up to make everything else. Gravy, green beans, stuffing, biscuits, and the turkey itself. Thankfully, the potatoes and sweet potatoes were covered by our guests. It was my first time keeping tabs on so much at once but everything came in on time. I kept my head down as we took our seats but apparently I did not screw it up and people liked the dinner.

All of that is to say that I was really too busy and then tired on the day to actually think about Thanksgiving. As I went to bed, I was just thankful that nobody had hated the food and that things went off with very few hitches. I slept the sleep of a conquering hero, having done something that many people do every single year. Still, it was a big deal for somebody as insecure as me. Everybody went home happy and we got the dishes done and I ended the night watching Deadpool with my brother. Introducing somebody to one of my favorite movies is one of my greatest joys so I went to bed happy.

So, I was thinking about it all today. I am thankful for my family who supported me in the kitchen the same way they support me year round. I am thankful that I was able to finish my work in time to have a peaceful holiday. I am thankful that I am getting plenty of work in the legal field, getting to know lawyers and paralegals in the Baltimore area and establishing a reputation. I am thankful that I went to a psychiatric nurse this year and got a prescription for Zoloft and I have been able to manage being around people better. I am thankful that I quit sugar earlier this year. I am thankful that I have committed to the gym, working out like it is my second job. I am thankful that I have started going to the doctor again to get my health under control. I am thankful that I have decided to be happier. Lastly, I am thankful that my creative juices are still flowing so that I can keep writing here which makes me happy.

New Year’s Day 2018

January 1, 2018

First, I would like to apologize for this post being later than it usually is. I know that might not matter much to whoever is reading this but it matters to me. Usually, I have things together and I have a post or two scheduled so I don’t have to scramble to get something up when I might be busy. Do I have a good excuse on why I did not do this for today? Not really. Basically, I got through one of the most positive Christmas holidays I have had in a while. I felt like I really had a good time and things went smoother. I was also super pleased with the Christmas gift that I picked out for people now that I can afford real gifts again. I got great gifts as well, mostly reference books to help with the D&D campaign I am working on. I could honestly go without gifts but my mom and stepfather love giving them and I understand because I love giving gifts too. Once again, I stressed over Secret Santa for no reason because I love to put pressure on myself but I felt like I relaxed a lot more this time around.

I had five days off from work that I mostly spent out in West Virginia and there is a lot of joy for me just in walking down the super friendly main street of Shepherdstown. I was proud to live there for nearly two years and visiting is nostalgic for me. It reminds me of the good parts of living in Sussex, New Jersey, and the family vacations to Woodstock, Vermont. When I got back, I got to have a drink and a great conversation with my brothers. Longtime readers (or archive delvers) of this blog will know how much I love and respect my brothers. I had a day off to myself in Baltimore which I used to watch The Last Jedi which I loved. Then it was back to work for three days, one of those limbo-like weeks where part of the staff are out and the other half are a little bit checked out.

On Friday, I spent my birthday at work which is fine by me. People who know me know that I do not like people to make a huge deal of my birthday. I have not had an official party in a long time. If anything, I have a calm dinner with my folks and see a movie but sometime that happens weeks or months after the day itself. Many people left great messages on my Facebook which reminds me that I have to do better with wishing other people a happy birthday. I spent Saturday as I wished, and I went and saw I, Tonya to treat myself. I had a great time decompressing, watching stuff, and playing video games. I also have had some great winter walks lately.

Last night I moseyed over to Joe and Jill’s house, a place that I often go for gaming. I also go there for craft night on Tuesday which is where I get some of the writing for this blog done. I also hang out with that group of friends on Trivia Night on Wednesday. By the way, if you are in the neighborhood in Columbia, Maryland on a Wednesday night, stop by the Second Chance Saloon for Atomic Trivia. A great time is had by all. This group of friends is something that I am really grateful for as we enter into 2018. I may not make it to every gathering but I have fun every time I am with them and I look forward to the times when I can make the drive out there.

There is a lot more that I want to do with this blog. I had a lot of fun doing DnDcember this year and I might make that a thing next year because I really love creating in that world. I will be continuing the new story When It All Ended which takes place about five years ago in my Elorian campaign setting. I will be writing more about and in that campaign but I cannot post what would be spoilers for my players. I have other ongoing stories that I want to continue/finish. I especially have great plans currently for Redcross and The Symbol (which may get a new title now that I am thinking about it). I want to write more weird stuff too, like the short bit based on a deck of playing cards and a deck of tarot cards and the court reporter script. I want to continue to stretch and grow in my writing and continue to have fun writing.

I continue to have faith in humanity this year even though that faith is constantly shaken and tested. I believe in the goodness of my family and my friends. I believe that when push comes to shove, the people I surround myself will do the right thing. I believe that I will do the right thing when the opportunity presents itself. The United States feels like it is on the edge of something bad like one good shove could ruin everything. Maybe that shove already happened with an unpaid-for tax cut that will probably put us trillions of dollars into debt. Still, I have to keep having hope or I will spiral into depression and I will never get out. I have to believe that good things can and will happen. I sincerely hope that things get better for you, dear reader, even if last year was a good year. Things can always be better.

Halloween Begins Monday!

September 30, 2017

Obviously, long-time readers know that my favorite holiday is Halloween. I dedicate the whole month of October to the holiday on this blog and I dedicate even more of the year to “Halloween Season”. Christmas is kind of a no-brainer. I was raised right so kindness and generosity are obvious to me and acting those impulses out yearly is merely a culmination of how I feel for those I love and respect. In comparison, Halloween celebrates the silly and the scary so its value is a little more esoteric.

Being silly is important in life because we all tend to take things too seriously sometimes. We work all day to pay to pay the bills and work at our lives to better ourselves. We need to unwind by watching ghosts and goblins or dress up intending to look cool or stupid. We need that because if we did not have pressure valves like that, we would explode ten times over. Lately, the world seems to be creeping ever closer to a bad place. It is important to work against that but the pressure is so high we also need to take care of ourselves.

The world is already scary but Halloween provides a scary service in that regard. It sets up scares that are inconsequential and ultimately harmless. These frightening situations are easily defeated. Besides being fun, it builds us up for the more difficult scares we encounter in everyday life. Freddy Krueger does not hold a candle to asking out your first crush. He does give you a little boost of confidence when you make it through A Nightmare on Elm Street at age nine. If you got through ninety minutes of Jason and Freddy, you might be a little better off when you face Cindy.

Anyway, this post marks the beginning of my annual Halloween tradition. I will be reviewing thirteen moves through the month (Monday-Wednesday-Friday) and then three movies on the 31st. I will also be continuing the tradition of Fanfictober with a continuation of the Aftershocks story I started writing two years ago. Media Updates will continue but they will be spooky as well. The above video should explain everything. Below, you will find the more copyright safe video for visitors from outside of the USA. The only difference is the song used.

Happy Halloween! Enjoy!

Christmas Interview Questions

December 25, 2016

Since it is Christmas, I thought I would break my normal update schedule and post today. While it has been over a decade since I have attended church, I still celebrate Christmas with my family. My stepfather’s family actually gives and receives gifts tomorrow morning which extends our Christmas tradition a little more. Anyway, here are a few Christmas interview questions to celebrate this day of giving.

Do you prefer to give gifts or receive them?

When I was little, I was all about receiving things. However, as I got older and older, receiving became less and less important. I struggled to actually add things to my Christmas list because things became less important to me. Action figures just took up space so I started to float toward comic books, books, video games and movies which are all objects that give you an experience and serve a specific purpose. I still find it hard to ask for anything since I already have mostly everything I need and most of what I might want is boring and cheap. At the same time, giving gifts has become a more rewarding experience. I struggled to pick good gifts for the people I love. I was always desperate for a gift to give because it was required. Now, I have become better at reading people and drawing on my personal connections to them to pick a good gift. Nothing I give is boring or impersonal, it always carries memories of a bit of fiction we both liked or a memory we shared. Now I prefer giving gifts so I can see the reaction and the feeling that I really know that person.

What’s your favorite Christmas movie?

This is a huge running thing on the Internet and among my friends and family. The most popular answer that I have heard is Die Hard as it is loudly proclaimed by my brother. While I love Die Hard, I cannot pick it because it is not actually a Christmas movie. The same goes for my joke answer which is Batman Returns which involves Batman saving Christmas. One of my favorite movies, A Nightmare Before Christmas, has officially been labeled a Halloween movie so that does not count either. I feel the same should be said of Gremlins. I think I would actually go with White Christmas which I finally saw for the first time last year. It starts with singing Christmas songs to the troops in the middle of a really bad war zone. It ends with the main characters putting on a show to save a failing business. It stars Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye among others and has the old Christmas standard White Christmas (of course). It is a kind-hearted movie but it does not fall into the trap of getting too sappy, too sarcastic or too sugary sweet. It has a lot of humor but it also has a lot of touching moments and conflict which, to me, is what the holidays are all about.

What’s your favorite Christmas song?

Musically, I would have to go with the song I posted on Thursday, All I Want for Christmas is You by Vince Vance and the Valiants. Lisa Layne is one heck of a singer and I like the pleading nature of the song a lot along with some jazzy backup from the band. However, it is not a message that resonates with me. I have never had a special somebody during Christmas that I was missing and needed desperately to be with. It felt a little right that one Christmas I was working on A Christmas Carol and could not come home to my family for Christmas but that is not what I want from Christmas. I would have to go with Santa Baby simply because it embodies what I want from Christmas. I want playfulness, I want happiness, I want good music and good secular fun. Obviously, my heart goes out to the Eartha Kitt version because she was Catwoman and that ties into the whole Batman thing from earlier. She also really does well walking the line between playfulness, flirtatiousness and holiday cheer.

And how about a few gifts?

From the WWE for fans of Why I Love Pro-Wrestling:

A little Heavy Metal in honor of my new Dungeons and Dragons character:

And a look at why Home Alone may not be the best holiday film:

Merry Christmas!

December 25, 2015

Well, as the title says Merry Christmas. This time of year is difficult to get through for a lot of people.  It’s a tough time and I try to remember how lucky I am even while I’m in the lion’s den.  As Bing sang, I can fall asleep counting my blessings.  Still, it’s not all wine and roses so all I can tell you is that you have to keep fighting the good fight.  Hang in there and you will see the other side and whatever is there.

In the spirit of “fighting the good fight”, I present a video that stars my brother as a bad ass Santa.  It is best viewed on your phone as it is a 360 degree movie.  Check it out.

Rebel Without a Claus


Top 11 Christmas Episodes

December 20, 2015

Top 11

11. Scrubs – My Own Personal Jesus

Probably last on the list because it leans heavily on the belief in God and the low production values. It largely deals with how hospitals are one of the worst places to be during the holidays. In the emotional parts of our lives, it can sometimes bring the worst of us bubbling to the surface. A young Catholic surgeon loses his faith while on call on Christmas Eve. He feels he has been proven wrong in his assertion that God watches over all of us. In the end, his faith is restored and we’re reminded that even if you don’t believe in God, you can believe in people. The subplot has plenty of comedy about dealing with people you don’t like but coming together anyway. It’s a welcome balance to the sad but uplifting main plot.

10. Rick and Morty: Anatomy Park

Alright, this one is only this low on the list because half of it is a Jurrasic Park/Innerspace parody. That plot has little to do with Christmas besides taking place inside a homeless man in a santa suit. The title characters (and Jon Oliver) are busy dealing with the strange problem inside Ruben. While all of this is going on, the rest of the family is playing host to Steve’s parents and trying to get along during the holidays. The family in Rick and Morty are pretty disfunctional. They’re perhaps the most disfunctional family I’ve seen in fiction that still stays together. Steve, the father, decides to disconnect his family from electronics for the holiday so they can connect with one another. He’s not prepared for the consequences of his action. The episode teaches that sometimes our family can annoy us and drive us crazy, especially around the holidays. That’s ok. It’s very normal.

9. Futurama – XMas Story

While the episode is largely silly, like most Futurama episodes there’s a deeper message involved. The surface story is about how a Santa Claus robot has gone crazy in the year 3000 and will murder anybody after sundown. Naturally, this is because its naughty/nice processing unit has been damaged. However the episode more expertly deals with two characters who are feeling lonely on Christmas because they have no family. Both of them fail to see that they can always fall back on their circle of friends because friends are our extended family. They also tackle the folly of being selfish especially around the holidays. There’s also a mostly subtle message that possessions are fleeting and no thing can take the place of a kind thought.

8. Boston Legal: Loose Lips

Now, I’ve only seen the first season of Boston Legal but it’s definitely got cynical edge to it that you might think would clash with Christmas. The thing is, beneath that cynical and bitter surface, Boston Legal has heart and that especially applies to its star, James Spader. His character likes to pretend he has no heart and that he’s the villain but in the end he often does the right thing in spite of himself. Christmas is all about that sometimes. Christmas can be the one time all year where we stop ourselves and do the right thing. Not because we’re supposed to but because we realize we want to be good just like Ebenezer Scrooge did. The secondary plot has to do with a confidentiality dilemma when a doctor’s patient may be planning to kill somebody. The main plot is much more Christmas-y and has to do with a Santa who was fired because it was discovered that he cross-dresses on his off hours. The main plot starts kind of comedic but ends up being pretty touching and features one of those good mall Santas.

7. 30 Rock: Ludachristmas

30 Rock was a clever show that was always funny but every episode devolved into insanity unless it already began insane. This is one of those episodes that starts with a lot of crazy concepts and premises and just runs with it. There’s weird amnesia, crazy alcoholic christmas and paper shredders that are easily mistaken for a photo scanner. There is a clash between those who just want to have fun with those who would dictate how you should celebrate Christmas. In the end, maybe it’s not such a good idea to meddle in how other people celebrate as long as they’re responsible and safe. The main story hammers home how everybody’s family is pretty crazy so there’s not much point worrying about the grass looking greener on the other side. It’s best to just live and let live most of the time.

6. Bones: The Santa in the Slush

Bones has always been a good show. Some of my scientist friends might have problems with it but I’ve liked the show because it has compelling characters and stories with a lot of heart. Even the worst episode of Bones is head and shoulders above a lot of other stuff on television. The show has had a long run so it has a lot of holiday episodes to choose from. I had to go with The Santa in the Slush because of the interesting imagery of the episode. It starts with the discovery of a murdered mall Santa and the mission to discover who could do such a thing. Now, these days its popular to depict mall Santas as alcoholic jerks who are just faking it for cash. However, I love a good story about a true mall Santa who loves kids and is sticking it out in the trenches as a true foot soldier for the North Pole. We all want to believe in magic. Whether it’s the magic of Santa or the magic of human kindness, we all want to believe. This is a good story that shows that there are people out there who really believe in humanity and what’s right in the world.

5. Supernatural: A Very Supernatural Christmas

Brothers have history together. I lived in a house (several in fact) with my brothers for 18 years and then spent holidays and some summers with them. Granted, we never had the history the Winchesters had but we went through a lot of stuff together. Even in moments where that’s not being directly dealt with that is the major undercurrent of the show. So how do two guys who grew up experiencing Christmas in motels on the road view the holidays? Both Sam and Dean have had a taste of normal Christmas but that’s gone for them. The episode also deals with various mytholigies that surround Christmas. Some have been forgotten and some were appropriated for use by Christianity. It’s a fun but creepy look at those myths coming to life.

4. Veronica Mars: An Echolls Family Christmas

Since this episode occurs in the first season, Veronica is very much separated from the friends and family (minus her dad) that she used to celebrate with. This isn’t necessarily a happy episode, especially for one set at Christmas. That’s fine as the holidays are not always so happy and problems don’t just magically stop during the holidays. This episode primarily focuses on the Echolls family’s dysfunctional problems. There is a more lighthearted whodunit trying to figure out who stole the poker winnings from the last poker game with Veronica taking great pleasure in shaking down the rich boys (even her ex). In the main plot we have a much more dangerous mystery that includes cheating, stalking and holiday parties. It foreshadows a lot of stuff later in the series. It’s a good dysfunctional look at the holidays because we’ve all experienced that at one point or another.

3. Leverage: The Ho Ho Ho Job

When your main cast is a bunch of ex-criminal vigilantes who no longer have any family connections, you don’t really expect to have a Christmas episode. However, from its inception, episodes of Leverage are about restoring hope to the hopeless and defending the defenseless. Most of the characters are loathe to get into the Christmas spirit but all they need is a little push from the suddenly cheery orphan thief to try and stop a holiday heist. They take the case of a mall santa who may as well be the real man in red. In the end the crew and even some of the villains embrace the season. It’s a lot of fun and doesn’t delve into the somewhat dark histories of the characters but does show them getting a little light in their lives.

2. Doctor Who: The Doctor, The Widow and the Wardrobe

It was hard to pick just one Doctor Who Christmas episode but I managed to whittle it down eventually even though I could probably do a separate list. British shows tend to run a little dark around the holidays and Doctor Who is often not an exception. This one starts with a mother taking her kids to the country for the holidays while trying to keep it secret that their dad recently died. While there is a horror/science fiction plot at work, there is a bigger discussion on the nature of the collision of happiness and tragedy. The Doctor does his best to heal this broken family and in the end I was so filled with joy that I cried.

1. Community: Comparitive Religion

The first season of Community was like a force of nature when it showed up. It was a little more cynical and bitter as the characters were still feeling out their relationship with one another. Still, by Christmas at the end of their first semester they had grown into a tight group that genuinely liked each other despite all of their flaws. However, sometimes it is the people with the best intentions who can cause the most pain. Shirley is a devout Christian and chooses to impose her will and control over her non-Christian friends using motherly guilt. The episode features a pretty even-handed look at how many different cultures in the United States celebrate Christmas because it’s fun and not because they’re Christians. In the end, everybody learns that family means togetherness and that’s way more powerful than any religion in the world. It manages to achieve this message without putting anybody’s beliefs down and isntead preaching peace and the ability to live and let live. It’s a violent but strangely joyous way to celebrate the holidays.

Thanksgiving 2015

November 26, 2015

Just a quick note since this is being typed on my phone and I am bad at finger typing.  Turkey Day really isn’t my favorite holiday and it doesn’t help that I’m in the middle of a nasty bout of depression.  There are certain things I dread about the holidays but thankfully some of those elements are missing.  I guess I should just try and be thankful for those who love me and accept me as flawed as I am.  Maybe the waves of anxiety and depression will give me a break soon.  I want to find my peace of mind.

Anyway, don’t let me get you down.  Happy Thanksgiving!  Be thankful for what you have and think of others this time of year.

Halloween 2014

October 1, 2014

It is now officially October so, of course, I start to think a lot about Halloween.  The haunted houses and trails and mazes are opening to the public to scare the bejeezus out of them and pumpkins are showing up at grocery stores that are already flooded with candy.  All over the country people are sewing the finishing touches on their costumes and getting ready for all of the festivities.  I’m going to continue to get into the spirit myself as the days of this month continue to tick by.

Here in West Virginia, October came in rough and spooky with a huge thunderstorm big enough to force Brad and Janet to stop off at a creepy old house.  Of course, I sort of celebrate Halloween year round I just don’t advertise it.  I love most horror movies and I love the design of fake haunted houses and the lore of “real” haunted houses.  I love the imagery and the wicked, high energy feeling that I get when I know that Halloween is approaching.  True, I don’t really go to parties and I haven’t dressed up in years but I’m not into that stuff year around either.

If you read my blog (and you are right now. Hello!) then you will be seeing Halloween stuff throughout the month.  You may have already seen my review of Clownhouse but there are plenty of scary movies that I want to see and review.  It will depend on what I can easily get my hands on but I definitely have a wish list.  I usually skew towards the horror movies with a comic edge to them but some on my list are more dark and traditionally scary.

I will be continuing work on The Key, my own little ongoing horror serial.  I have yet to comment on The Key because I believe the posts should go by without comment.  The central theme of The Key is the struggle for control.  The thing that scares me the most in horror is the loss of one’s self or one’s self control.  When I read Grant Morrison’s Batman and Robin I was absolutely terrified by Grant Morrison’s Professor Pyg and his dollotrons.  A villain who transforms people into disfigured, mindless servants and the process is irreversible.  I shudder to even think about it now.

The other thing I am trying to do with the Key is to write an atypical protagonist.  A heroine who does not want to be part of her own story and regularly tries to check out of it.  Like Alice Hardy in Friday the 13th she only saves the day when she is forced to.  I really don’t want to talk too much about it because I feel like it takes the mystery out of the story.  I love writing it because it feels so different and exciting.

Other than that, I don’t know what may come but I’m getting excited.

Christmas is Coming!

December 6, 2008

Christmas is Coming!

I love Christmas.  I really do.  I know this must be a shocking confession.  I’ll give you a moment to adjust.  Okay, moment over.  I’ve loved Christmas all of my life.  However, the love hasn’t been continuous. 

When I was a kid I loved Christmas like any other child of my ilk.  I mean what Christian-raised kid didn’t bounce off  the walls thinking about Santa coming?  It was hard to sleep on Christmas Eve and I mean incredibly hard.  Even if it was Santa it was still a strange man set to enter my house.  Clearly my quirky paranoia developed at an early age and let’s face it, the Santa thing is a bit of a weird social custom.

Like most teenagers I went through a rebellious phase where I could barely stand my folks.  So as you can imagine Christmas and other family-oriented holidays were needlessly rough around the edges.  As you can imagine I’m also regretful about those times.  Around then Christmassy stuff like carols and decorations would annoy me.  However it would really only annoy me if I saw or heard it before the last week of December.  I can’t tell you why because I don’t really know why.  Perhaps it was part of a Christmas metamorphosis. 

At any rate, I believe it was Christmas ’03 when the magic of the holidays finally reemerged inside of me.  I was studying at Rutgers and the trials and tribulations of being a theater major were taking their toll.  Christmas was closing in and I was too tired to get excited about it.  It was some dim break off in the future somewhere that didn’t feel real yet.  However, as part of our Stage Management class our teacher invited us to attend A Christmas Carol at Madison Square Garden.  I took a train up to the city and stepping out of Penn Station at any point in December is magical.  New York City does Christmas up right.  I started to get a little excited.  Then the curtain rose on the show and I could not stop smiling.  I even saw it a second time that day. (Hey, it was free so why not?)  From then on I think I resolved to embrace Christmas. Afterall Christmas is about being nice, having fun and being of good cheer. Why not, right? Why not, indeed.

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