Listen with the kids – this episode is G-rated • 3 classic Christmas tales for your yuletide listening pleasure • The real meaning of “recreation” • How to get your kid on no matter how old you are • Story time at the TNS Dojo on a cold, snowy night – wear your onesie • Merry Christmas
What can you say about Christmas? It’s for kids. And adults. It’s for everybody. But on different levels. An allegory.
The first episode of this show (Dec 2016) was a Christmas episode. I called it the Holiday Survival Guide. Because if we’re not careful, the holidays can beat us senseless. It’s all about managing expectations. Raise them too high and disappointment is a lead-pipe cinch. Keep them attainable, and you might have a great time.
Until we’re around age 12, Christmas is the hap-hap-happiest time of the year. If you’re over 21 and still think so, you’ve either got brain damage or have achieved spiritual perfection. If it’s the latter, do not pass Bethlehem. Do not collect Frankincense and Myrrh. Go directly to paradise, amen I say unto you… baby.
I’m gonna let you in on a little secret. Since I was around 18 or 19, I’ve saved one copy of every Christmas card I ever sent. This one was from around age 25.
Here’s this year’s. Don’t misconstrue, I still want the age 25 version. But my wife and kids might take a dim view of it. At the same time, the current Christmas card has always been part of it as well. How do you spell d-i-c-h-o-t-o-m-y?
Last year’s Christmas show was from the 25 year-old me. Snarky. Wise ass. Caustic. I officiated at Charlie Brown’s suicide and sang his sorry ass into the next world. That I do not regret. I never liked that neurotic little drip. He had zero to complain about, but complain was all he did. He needed to be bitch – slapped. Hard. His life was a boat-ride, but he acted as if he was behind barbed wire at Dachau. What a little asshole.
This Christmas, I decided to do something very different. Since I started this endeavor, listeners have been telling me, Larry read us a bedtime story! Here they are. Not a bedtime story… 3 bedtime stories. Especially curated (I hate that word) for long-time listeners who are family folks or plan on being such one day… or maybe want to re-capture the feeling of being a kid at Christmas. 3 stories. 3 different feels. All rooted in the same 2,017 year- old event.
It’s astonishing how little some people know about Christmas. They don’t know there was a prick king (isn’t that a Thai dish?) named Herod who put out a contract on a baby. That astrology figured into it in a big, big way. That 3 wise guys got wind of the plan to snuff their asses so they took a circuitous route home to avoid Herod’s button men. The real story of Christmas reads like a Mario Puzo novel. But who knows that? For FAQ, check the New Testament.
So this Christmas, I wish you… what?
First, peace. If you put your head on the pillow and anxieties have you vibrating like A 440, that’s no good. Peace.
Next… health. Without health, life is grim. A constant struggle.
Lastly – believe it or not, I wish you love. With sufficient doses of love, lack of peace and/or health can be overcome. It’s true. I’ve seen it with my own eyes.
There are but 6 shopping days until Christmas. If that factoid is of some import to you, you’ve landed on the wrong podcast. If you dismiss that intel with the back of your hand, you’re in the right place.
Each year, as Christmas draws near, la familia and I watch 3 movies.
1) Christmas Vacation. In many ways, I am Clark Griswold, but shorter and nastier. (Chevy Chase is 6’5″. I’m a paltry 6′)
2) It’s A Wonderful Life. My wife turned me on to this flick. Jimmy Stewart was the most underrated actor in the history of Hollywood. If you dispute this, watch him at the railroad station.
3) A Christmas Carol. There are multiple screen versions of this Dickens classic. My all-time favorite is the George C. Scott version. The single best movie to view on Christmas Eve. (If movie watching is on your agenda. It need not be.)
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Usually, I end these epistles with plugs for Patreon and t-shirts.