Friday, December 13, 2013

I'll have the (Christmas) special

I'm honored to be the first to post for the INDIE IGNITES TWELVE DAYS OF CHRISTMAS.

As the senior member of Indie Ignites (I think), I’m going to tell you young folks a little story of Christmas past. It goes all the way back to the days before blu-ray, before DVDs, even before VCRs – before cable TV, even. Yes, television used to come to us on four, maybe five stations, the three national networks and a couple of crappy local stations that played mostly local talent shows and horror movies (though I fondly recall one that had the Super G races, in which gerbils raced each other live, or even Dialing for Dollars, on which a host would call people during commercial breaks and give out prizes to those watching the movie.) Those were the days, kids. 

And the most magical part of the television viewing year was Christmas with its much-anticipated Christmas specials. They were only on once a year, so you had to study TV Guide to make sure you got the right night, because if you missed Santa Claus is Comin' to Town you were stone out of luck. You just had to wait another 360 days to catch it again.

My favorites were The Grinch Who Stole Christmas and A Charlie Brown Christmas. I was always bathed, in my jammies, and right in front of the set on those special nights, and I didn’t even mind if they pre-empted The Brady Bunch. (Can you tell how old I am yet?).  I think my first crush on a fictional character was on Linus, despite his unfortunate hair.  He was thoughtful and had a spiritual quality I really admired even then. Plus his last name is "Van Pelt." How cool is that? And to this day, whenever I am in a situation that calls for dancing, I imitate the side-to-side sort of pogo that Charlie and his friends did onstage at the Christmas pageant, hoping that it looks kind of cool and retro and ironic and not evidence that I have all the grace of a crippled donkey. (I could not find a free-use image from the special, but here is a Charlie Brown latte, which is almost as good):
Charlie Brown latte, Christopher from San Francisco, July 9, 2012!_(7539446408).jpg

Unlike my own children, I was never scared of the Grinch. As a kid, I found his underbite kind of charming, though I cried whenever he mistreated Max, who had to be the sweetest little cartoon dog in history.  As an adult, I still love this special because it's about the holiday being about love and not material goods, my daughter bore an uncanny resemblance to Cindy Lou Hoo as an infant (though, mercifully, without the antennae), and because as a veg*n I appreciate the sly anti-meat critique in the serving of the "roast beast." Plus, I live in Dr. Seuss' hometown now (in fact, his wife grew up just down the street from here) and I like to visit Springfield Museum Quadrangle's Sculpture Garden to hang out with a bronze Grinch and Max. I could not find a photo of that that I could post without risking copyright infringement, but here is a pretty awesome sand sculpture Grinch:

You don't need to snow in Key West to make a festive holiday snowsandman.

And you don't need snow either to win some holiday presents. Just enter the Rafflecopter giveaway here! Best of luck and have the happiest of  holidays!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

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