Sunday, December 4, 2011

Ghost Stories at Christmas?

You hear it all over the TV and radio starting every November and continuing through the end of December. According to Andy Williams and Johnny Mathis and Staples, “it’s the most wonderful time of the year.”

Not sure about you, but I love this song. It’s so corny and over-the-top cheery and fun to sing along to at full, cheeseball volume.

Most of the lyrics are sweet and jolly and easy to relate to – unless it’s 12:18am on Black Friday and you’re battling for the last Barbie Xtreme Rocker Goddess for Wii at Walmart. I mean, how can you hate “the kids jingle-belling and everyone telling you be of good cheeeeeeeer!”

However, there’s a dark side to this song. Check out this stanza in the lyrics:

There’ll be parties for hosting
Marshmallows for toasting
And caroling out in the snow.
There’ll be scary ghost stories
And tales of the glories
Of Christmases long long ago.

Scary ghost stories???  Wait… what?  Really??  Is this a Christmas tradition that we’ve been missing out on?  Was it a historically recognized holiday custom that somehow was phased out during the late 60s as part of the hippie movement?

And what would have been the purpose of telling scary ghost stories at Christmas? Was it a way to keep kids from opening their gifts early? “So, kids, if you try to open your gifts before morning, that murdered man’s disembodied hand will be waiting inside the wrapping paper and gift box to get you!!”

Now that I think about the whole stanza, who toasts marshmallows at Christmas? Toasting marshmallows… telling scary ghost stories… did the writers of this song confuse Christmas with a camping trip?

I don’t know. It’s all very surreal to me. What are your thoughts?

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Lightsaber Battle in the Back Seat

Below is the conversation that occurred in the back seat of my car last night.

Bear (5 years old):  Ballerina!  I know what we should ask for for Christmas. Jedi lightsabers.  Then we can have lightsaber fights.

Ballerina (3 years old):  Okay, Bear. But don’t we have lightsabers already? [I think she meant the light swords we bought them at Disney… over a year ago.]

Bear:  I’m talking about real lightsabers. They have them at Target. Right, Mom?

Me:  Um, yeah.

Bear:  See? 

Ballerina:  If we fight with lightsabers, who do you want to be?

Bear:  I’ll be Anakin.  That means my lightsaber has to be blue.  You need to be… um…

Ballerina:  Can I be Han Solo?

Bear:  No.  We will be playing a Revenge of the Sith [Bear pronounces it Siff] fight. Han Solo isn’t in Revenge of the Sith.

Ballerina:  Oh.  Then… who can I be?

Bear:  You can be Padme. We can give you a purple or pink lightsaber. That’s okay for girls.

Ballerina:  Who will be the dark Jedi?  [Not sure if she meant Mace Windu/Samuel Jackson or the “dark side” Jedi/Emperor.]

Bear:  It’ll be just you and me.

Ballerina:  Huh? Padme and Anakin are both good. They can’t fight.

Bear: No, Ballerina, I’m going to be bad Anakin, from the end of Revenge of the Sith. Remember? He turns bad.

Ballerina:  So wait. Will you be a good guy or a bad guy? [Incredulous that anyone would choose to be a bad guy.]

Bear:  A bad guy.  Bad Anakin.  From Revenge of the Sith. [At this point I’m thinking he just likes to say “Revenge of the Siff.”]

Ballerina:  So if just you and me fight, can I cut off your legs?  In Revenge of the Sith, Obi-Wan Kenobi cuts off Anakin’s legs and then they put on new legs and then they put on a scary cape and then the put on his Darth Vader mask and then he’s Darth Vader.

Bear:  Right. And after that he’s Darth Vader in Star Wars and Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi and we know that he’s really Anakin but also Darth Vader.

Ballerina:  Look, Mommy!  Christmas decorations!

I’m wondering how many of you reading this have no idea what this conversation is all about, how many of you are impressed at what an awesome mom I am and how many of you are ready to call Child Services…
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