Friday, November 28, 2008

HO!-HO!-OH! MERRY CHRISTMUS!

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Well, Thanksgiving – “The Gateway To Christmas” - has come and gone and we are now into The Official Christmas Season. It’s time to put on your Xmas Face.

In November of 2004, I created the following guide for the Amazon.com website. The original title is “So You’d Like To…Find Flaws In The Animated Christmas Classics – Part 1 and Part 2.”

For whatever reason, the guide never attracted much attention nor feedback, but I’ve decided to post it here on my own Blog anyway, in the event that someone somewhere might find it worth reading. And now without further introduction, I give you “Ho!-Ho!-Oh! Merry Christmus”, the artist formerly known as “Find Flaws In The Animated Christmas Classics”:

*This guide is dedicated to the memory of my very dear friend,
MARTY BRUMER (Feb. 15, 1960 to July 18, 1989)

He was a nice Jewish boy who liked to decorate Christmas cookies with my family.
Marty is greatly missed, but you can catch him in the role of Charlie, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's son, in the advent special, “PREPARING FOR CHRISTMAS.” Available from St. Anthony Messenger Press : 1-800-488-0488.


IT'S BEGINNING TO LOOK A LOT LIKE CHRISTMAS (Or, INTRODUCTION)

I love Christmas - the music, the color, the weather, the eggnog, and yes, even the fruitcake!

And I enjoy watching the animated television Christmas programs that I grew up with. They remain a special part of my Holiday tradition. Each of the "Classic Six" transports me back to my youth, and I retain some of their most memorable lines of dialogue as a part of my everyday jargon throughout the year.

My mind seems to be geared for detail work and as a natural consequence, I have become aware of several flaws in these Christmas favorites, having viewed them year after year. Sometimes these errors pertain to poor animation, but most are mistakes in continuity. I love these shows despite their flaws and their less than stellar animation. In fact, some of their defects are instrumental in further endearing the shows to me. Each year, I watch for the blemishes eagerly, always hopeful that a new one will manifest before my eyes that I may add it to my collection of flaws.

I assure you that the LAST thing I want to do is to spoil these wonderful Christmas specials for you. Seeing these mistakes in your Christmas favorites is a lot like learning the truth about Santa Claus - once they have been pointed out to you, there will be no turning back the clock to your days of innocence. As Thomas Wolfe wrote, "You Can't Go Home Again." If you harbor the slightest suspicion that finding boo-boos in “A Charlie Brown Christmas”, “Frosty The Snowman”, “The Little Drummer Boy”, “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town”, “Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer”, and “How The Grinch Stole Christmas” might diminish your future enjoyment of them, then please read no further. Click off this guide now!

Still here? OK, good. I have included the approximate time elapsed into each show where the error in question occurs so that you may skip directly to it if you wish. These times are according to my VCR and videotapes. Actual results may vary.


A CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS

A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965) was one of the very first animated Christmas specials, and it is still the reigning champion, in my opinion. Newspaper journalist, Dave Walker, once wrote that "Before December 9, 1965, you called a scrawny Christmas tree a scrawny Christmas tree. After that date, it had a name. 'That's a Charlie Brown tree,' you'd say, moving on to the next spruce or fir." He also wrote that, "In countless homes around the world, the Christmas season doesn't officially start until Linus shuffles to center stage, raises a finger and says, 'Lights, please.' " It's kinda hard to argue with that, isn't it?

CLASSIC LINES OF DIALOGUE:

"I know nobody likes me; why do we have to have a holiday season to emphasize it?"
~ Charlie Brown

"Nickels, nickels, nickels! That beautiful sound of plinking nickels!"
~ Lucy Van Pelt

"All I want is what I have coming to me; All I want is my fair share."
~ Sally Brown

"Sorta makes you want to treat me with more respect, doesn't it?"
~ Pigpen

"On the contrary, I didn't think I looked THAT good."
~ Pigpen

"Isn't he the cutest thing?"
~ Sally Brown

"That's what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown."
~ Linus Van Pelt

FLAWS:

* BUT CAN HE DO IT WITH LOAVES AND FISH? [elapsed time - 3 min.]
Here we find Snoopy sitting on his doghouse reading a newspaper and munching bones that are stacked up beside him. One after another, he pulls 3 bones from the top, but the stack never decreases in the least. It's a miracle!

* REALIN' IN THE ERRORS [elapsed time - 3 min.]
When Lucy opens her psychiatry booth for Charlie Brown, she reverses the placard that says "OUT", so that the sign now reads, "The Doctor Is REAL IN." But everytime we see her booth from the side, the placard no longer reads "REAL IN", but simply "IN." Also notice how the animation is so poor that at one point, Lucy does not appear to be sitting behind the desk, but rising up out of the top of it!

* HABLA INGLES, MANTA-CHICO! [elapsed time - 16 min.]
This has puzzled me for decades. When Charlie and Linus enter the Christmas tree lot, Linus knocks on a large aluminum tree and then reflects, "This REALLY brings Christmas close to a person." Perhaps I'm just a bit dense, but for the life of me, I can't figure out what that line means. How does an aluminum Christmas tree and its metallic sound bring Christmas "close" to a person? Was he being sarcasitc? "ISN'T THERE ANYONE WHO KNOWS WHAT LINUS IS TALKING ABOUT?"

"Sure, Stephen, I can tell you what Linus is talking about...lights please... (your answer here.)"

* SPLIT PERSONALI-TREES [elapsed time - 16 min.]
You don't really need me to point out this flaw to you; it is nearly as famous as the show itself. Notice how when Charlie's tree first appears on the screen it has 2 branches. The next time we see it, it's been expanded to 5 branches. For the duration of the program, Charlie's tree is in constant flux; changing in size and shape with each new appearance.

* AN "ORGANICALLY" GROWN PIANO? [elapsed time -18 min.]
This is not a "flaw" (as it was intended by the creators) but rather, a creative, humorous touch that I especially enjoy. While Schroeder is trying to satisy Lucy's request for Jingle Bells, notice how at one point, the sound of a full-blown cathedral organ emanates from his tiny toy piano. What a musician, eh?

* THE CHOIR PLAYS MUSICAL CHAIRS [elapsed time - 23 min.]
At the program's end, all of the children participate in decorating Charlie's tree. Notice how when Lucy Van Pelt says, "Charlie Brown IS a blockhead, but he did get a nice tree," we see that Snoopy, Sally, and Freida (the red-headed girl with naturally curly hair) are on the RIGHT side of the tree, with Pigpen nowhere to be seen. ONE INSTANT LATER, in the long shot, Snoopy, Sally, and Freida are now suddenly on the LEFT side of the tree, and Pigpen has instantly materialized on the RIGHT side! Those kids sure do “get around,” don't they?


FROSTY THE SNOWMAN

Frosty The Snowman (1969). Although I do enjoy Jimmy Durante's narration, FROSTY does not hold up for me nearly as well as the other 5 animated Christmas specials listed here. But being a hardcore traditionalist, I still give it half-an-hour of my time once a year.

CLASSIC LINES OF DIALOGUE:

"Happy Birthday!"
~ Frosty
(*Although the creator's may not have intended this, it's interesting to note that in celebrating Christmas, it is a BIRTH that we are really acknowledging, and so Frosty's first confused words are, in a sense, actually appropriate.)

"That silly snowman. Once they come to life they don't know nothin'!"
~ Officer Yoey O'Dogherty

"Think nasty, think nasty, think nasty!"
~ Professor Hinkle

"But [sniffle], he was my friend."
~ Karen

"Sorry to lose and run, but I've got to get busy writing; busy, busy, busy."
~ Professor Hinkle

FLAWS:

* IT'S A (s)NO(w)-BRAINER [elapsed time - 7 min.]
Shortly after coming to life, Frosty boasts that he can count to 10. In demonstrating this, he gets as far as 5, but then follows that with 9. Afterwards, he qualifies his boast by stating, "Well, I can count to five." Ah, but just a moment here! Not so fast! If Frosty REALLY can't correctly count to 10, then how is it that he was aware of the fact that his mistake occurred immediately after 5? I have no idea why Frosty is playing dumb with us here, but obviously it's a set-up. Beware the "snow job."

* SPLITTING HAIRS? [elapsed time - 9 min.]
A woman in the beauty parlor freaks out when she catches a glimpse in her hand mirror of Frosty parading through the street. But her hair actually stands on end BEFORE the image of Frosty appears in the mirror.

* SURPLUS COPPER [elapsed time - 9 min.]
Officer Yoey O'Dogherty threatens to give Frosty a ticket for ignoring the traffic light on the lamppost. But if the traffic lights are functioning, why is O'Dogherty directing traffic in the first place? Maybe the police department is just spending its extra funds so that next year's budget won't be reduced. You know the gig! (*My brother Napoleon caught this one.)

* THE LITTLE TRAIN THAT COULD (BUT DIDN'T NEED TO) [elapsed time - 14 min.]
The narrator tells us that "When the little freight train stopped to let an express full of happy Christmas travelers pass, Frosty took advantage of the opportunity and quickly got them all out," but the image on the screen tells a different story. The little freight train actually goes over the express train's cross-track and comes to a stop on the other side of it while the characters disembark. In other words : having already passed over the oncoming express train's track, there was no real reason for the little freight train to come to a stop because the express passes BEHIND it!

* SQUIRRELED AWAY (Or, GONE WITH THE WIND) [elapsed time - 15 min.]
Our narrator, Durante, tells us how the Woodland Animals were decorating the trees in the forest for Christmas, while we're shown this activity and the cooperation of the animals. While one squirrel is tossing ornaments to another, the ornaments momentarily disappear while in mid-air. If you put your player on pause, and then advance the picture manually, frame by frame, you'll notice that the yellow colored balls suddenly vanish just before they are caught. They reappear one or two frames later, now safe in the paws of the receiving squirrel.

* CATCH ME IF YOU "CAN" [elapsed time - 22 min.]
His wicked intention having been thwarted by Santa, Professor Hinkle dejectedly kicks an empty tin can in the snow and complains, "That's not fair. I mean, we evil magicians have to make a living, too." But only moments before, when Hinkle arrived on the scene, the tin can did not exist!

* DON'T BE SO "ROOF" ON THE GIRL! [elapsed time - 23 min.]
At the end of the program, Santa and Frosty land the sleigh on the roof of Karen's 2 or 3 story house and drop her off there before continuing on their evening run. Hello?! McFly!! How did they expect this poor little girl to climb down from her housetop on a snowy, icy night and get safely indoors? Are we really expected to assume that Karen somehow survived this Christmas Eve and was around to greet Frosty the following year? I don't know about you, but I ain't buying it. A "FROSTY" roof is a dangerous roof!


THE LITTLE DRUMMER BOY

Why does King Balthasar wear a pumpkin on his head in The Little Drummer Boy? (1968) Probably more than any other animated special this one ignites the true Christmas Spirit in me. Greer Garson's narration is especially inspiring, particularly her inflection on "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God!" - quoting Jesus from His 'Sermon On The Mount', at the show's conclusion. This always fills me with wonder and love for my fellow man. I generally get over it fairly quickly, however.

CLASSIC LINES OF DIALOGUE:

"It is better to be crowded and rich than crowded and poor."
~ Ben Haramed

"Down knave, down!"
~ A Royal Soldier

"Outta the way, Ragamuffin!"
~ A Roman Centurion

FLAWS:

* BUT TELL US HOW YOU REALLY FEEL [elapsed time - 4 min., etc., ad nauseam.]

Not truly a "flaw" - more of a minor annoyance, really, but . . . if you count them off, you'll notice that in one form or another, we are told no less than 6 times in the first 12 minutes that Aron hates people. OK, OK, the boy's a misanthrope - we get it already. Can we move on now?

* WHOM DO WE TRUST? [elapsed time - 4 min. ]

Our narrator pronounces the name of BEN HARAMED by stressing the first syllable in Haramed, but when the man refers to himself the first time (but not thereafter) he pronounces his name by stressing the second syllable. So, who's got it right? Perhaps the next flaw is a clue?

* WE'D "APPRECIATE" BETTER DICTION! [elapsed time - 9 min.]

After a poor performance by his "Desert Showmen", Ben Haramed passes a hat through the crowd, soliciting donations. "Perhaps you will show your appreciation," he urges the spectators. But if you listen closely, you'll notice that he actually pronounces the word, "a-pree-SEE-ation." With this in mind, I'm siding with Greer Garson on the previous flaw. (*My brother caught this one also, and I "appreseeated" his input.)


SANTA CLAUS IS COMING TO TOWN

Every year I go 'round and 'round about it: which do I prefer, Santa Claus Is Coming To Town (1970) or Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer? I am fairly sure that Santa Claus would emerge victorious if it wasn't for that horribly dated Haight-Ashbury acid trip sequence in which Jessica sings "My World Is Beginning Today."

Which brings up another question: Here we have an "animated" woman named Jessica with bright red hair who sings. Can you think of another animated woman named Jessica who has bright red hair and sings? How about Jessica Rabbit? Ah-ha! I am convinced that Jessica Claus and Jessica Rabbit are one and the same! Imagine Jessica Claus after a little redistribution of weight; add a nip here and a tuck there, and then some considerable "enhancement" in the... uhm... "northern regions" and voila: Jessica Rabbit! No? Well think about it - have you ever seen the two of them together? Hmmm? Have you? I wonder if Santa knows about Roger, and vice versa. (I'm a bad boy, huh? A lump of coal for me this year.)

One of my favorite parts of this program is the extremely clever lyrics sung by Burgermeister Meisterburger in “No More Toymakers To The King.”

CLASSIC LINES OF DIALOGUE:

"Our baby's the best baby of them all."

~ Dingle Kringle

"As I suspected, you've broken your funny bone."
~ The Sombertown Doc

"Ooh, I've been bamboozled!"
~ Burgermeister Meisterburger

"Now I'm crowded!.... but at least I'm loved."
~ Winter Warlock

FLAWS:

* PROCRASTINATING WEATHER [elapsed time - 12 min.]
While Kris Kringle is passing over the Mountain Of The Whispering Winds on his first trip to Sombertown, the Winter Warlock descends upon him menacingly. But rather than deal with Kris right then and there, Mr. Warlock states, "I shall get him when he returns. He's got to cross my Mountain on the way home, and then no more being the nice guy." But what is the Warlock waiting for? He's already got Kris in the midst of his mountain presently and there's no reasonable explanation for why he delays his dastardly deeds until Kris is returning home.

* ME, MYSELF AND I [elapsed time - 8, 14 & 33 min.]
We see the previous ruler of Sombertown, the King, during the musical number “The First Toymaker To The King.” Later we find that the Sombertown doctor and the pauper whose children discover toys hidden in their stockings hanging over the hearth are the exact same character. Why did the filmmakers not use three different characters? As I understand it, during the filming there was a puppet union strike and many of the puppets were refusing to work, so the King was enlisted to play triple roles.

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* EVERYTHING'S JUST DUCKY... WRONG! [elapsed time - 15 min.] When Burgermeister Meisterburger exits the Sombertown City Hall, he trips on a toy duck and tumbles down the stairs. This is what causes all the Toy Trouble for the children of Sombertown. One problem: That toy duck? It isn't there on the steps of City Hall when the Burgermeister first walks out of the building. But the duck materializes a moment later when the Burgermeister takes his first steps down the stairs. "Wanna buy a broken duck?"
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* GIMME MO' LAND! [elapsed time - 23 min.]
Returning from Sombertown, Kris encounters a sign warning, "You are trespassing on the land of the Winter Warlock." But in reading it aloud, Kris says "LANDS", making the word plural. Perhaps Kris should have spent a little less time playing with deer, squirrels, rabbits, seals & dogs, and a little more time concentrating on the textbooks, eh?

* AMAZING MAIZE [elapsed time - 38 min.]
In this scene we find that Kris, The Kringles and Winter Warlock have been imprisoned in a dungeon cell. Through a barred window, Jessica (who inexplicably has not been arrested) speaks with the Warlock who laments that he has no magic left other than "a few last handfuls of magic feed corn." He tells us that this corn "can't dissolve prison walls. All it can do is make reindeer fly." Jessica feeds the corn to several reindeer and a minute later we see that our heroes have escaped and are now flying over the town on corn-fed, aerial reindeer. But hold on here! We STILL don't know how they got out of the prison cell! We know that the corn didn't dissolve the walls, so how did they get free from the dungeon and come into contact with the reindeer? This is an escape that even Harry Houdini couldn't explain!

* INCOGNITO FROM THE (ZZ) TOP TO THE BOTTOM [elapsed time - 40 min.]
This is not a flaw, but it sure is funny! Looking at a 'WANTED' poster of himself tacked to a tree trunk, the fugitive, Kris Kringle laughs. "Well, those posters are not going to do them any good now" he says and then turns around to reveal the beard he has grown. Here's a red-headed man running around in a bright red suit and hat, both trimmed with white fur, who thinks that by adding a red beard (and no mustache, mind you!) he is now disguised and unrecognizable!
Ha!-Ha!-Ha! Hee!-Hee!-Hee! HO!-HO!-HO!


RUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER

Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer (1964) is perhaps the most popular animated Christmas program and it's easy to see why. The young Rudolph is darn "cude" and Yukon Cornelius and the misfit elf (whatever his name is) are a lot of fun. Of course, we are forced to endure a (understandably) grumpy Santa and the tyrannical Chief Elf (who appears to have been modeled after Ed Asner!) Thankfully, justice prevailed and that reindeer punk, Fireball, was later relegated to the scrap heap of Yultide history. (Well, you never heard of him again, didja?)

CLASSIC LINES OF DIALOGUE:

"Pull up an ice block and lend an ear."
~ Sam Snowman

"I'b cude, I'b cude, she said I'b cude!"
~ Rudolph

"Duyp-duyp-duyp-duyp. ...Nuthin'!"
~ Yukon Cornelius

"Great bouncing icebergs!"
~ Yukon Cornelius

"This is man's work!"
~ Donner (who happens to be a reindeer, not a man).

"Hmmm. Well, it needs work. I have to go."
~ Santa
(*This line makes me laugh every year!)

"I haven't any dreams left to dream."
~ The Misfit Doll

"Looky what he can do!"
~ Yukon Cornelius

FLAWS:

* I SPY A FLY [elapsed time - 3 min.]
In the opening credits we are shown a yellow Christmas package which reads : "Burl Ives sings, Holly Jolly Christmas; Silver And Gold; Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer." If you look closely you'll notice a small fly flitting around in the snow just below this gift which bears Burl's credits.

* NAME THAT DENTIST (Or, WHO DOESN'T LIKE TO MAKE TOYS?) [elapsed time - 8 min.]
At the elves toy assembly line it is suddenly discovered with a sense of disbelief and horror, that our protagonist elf, Herbie, doesn't like to make toys. Each elf whispers this revelation to the elf sitting beside him. But listen closely and you'll notice that the third elf does not call the traitor "Herbie", but rather "Hermey." Later, Sam Snowman tells us that "Somehow Rudolph and Hermey managed to get through the first night." Later still, Rudolph also refers to the elf as Hermey when he introduces his friends to Charlie-In-The-Box on the Island of Misfit Toys. In other words, from the moment that the third elf calls Herbie "Hermey" instead, that remains his new name for the rest of the show. So, what's the little dude's real name?

* THE DECORATION(s) OF INDEPENDENCE [elapsed time - 21 min.]
No, this does not have to do with the American Revolution, nor is it a flaw, but just a really nice touch that I enjoy. As soon as our two heroes, Rudolph and "Hermbie", declare their independence and decide to strike out independently together (Ha!-Ha!), two ornaments - one green and one gold - suddenly and inexplicably disengage themselves from the Christmas tree behind the rebels and clank together at their feet. These two ornaments, now INDEPENDENT of the tree, are a neat, enriching little symbol that illustrates the newly realized autonomy of our misfit friends.

* WERE YOU RAISED IN A BARN? [elapsed time - 34 min. ]
While our little band of rebels are on the run from the Bumble Monster, Rudolph realizes that his shiny nose is endangering his friends, and so in the middle of the night the martyr sneaks out of their tiny cottage, leaving the others behind. But in leaving, the ill-mannered reindeer doesn't even bother to close the front door behind him. How long do you think it took before that bitter cold froze Yukon and Hermbie to death? You'd think Rudolph had been raised in a barn, but we were shown earlier that it was actually a cave.

* THE LAZY LION KING [elapsed time - 33 & 46 min.]
I'm pretty sure that the winged King Moonracer is not a cowardly lion, but he sure is a lazy one. Before our band of misfits leave the Island of Misfit Toys, King Moonracer asks them to go and inform Santa about the misfit toys, hoping that he can find a home for them - despite the fact that King Moonracer flies around the entire world every single night searching for misfit toys. (OK, so maybe he's not lazy, but he certainly appears to be afraid of seeing Santa Claus face-to-face for some reason.) At the story's conclusion, Santa makes the Island of Misfit Toys his very FIRST stop on Christmas Eve. If Santa's castle and workshop is in such close proximity to the Island of Misfit Toys, why didn't the winged King Moonracer just fly there himself to see Santa many years earlier? Hmmm... maybe he IS a cowardly lion after all. Santa seems to have him intimidated.

* DEER ME! WHO GOT FIRED? [elapsed time - 46 min.]
We all know that Santa employs 8 reindeer. Even the theme song of this production tells us so. But when Santa departs on Christmas Eve, only 6 reindeer plus Rudolph are harnessed to the sleigh. Which two reindeer got cut from the team? And why? Enquiring minds want to know!

* DEY MOID'ED DA BOID! [elapsed time - 32 & 49 min.]
Being a slightly warped individual with a healthy (unhealthy?) "appreseeation" for black comedy, this is my very favorite flaw of them all! At the program's end, we see Santa's sleigh flying over the residential areas while an elf hands an umbrella to each toy in order to facilitate a safe landing at the house where it is destined. When the elf pulls the misfit bird from the bag, he starts to provide him with a similar umbrella, but then realizing that birds have no need for assistance in flying, he withdraws the umbrella and sends the bird into the atmosphere without it. BUT . . . (Uh-Oh!) . . .

. . . we learned earlier that each of the toys on the Island of Misfit Toys had some sort of blemish or defect that caused them to be labeled as "misfits." This same bird informed us that his particular defect was that he "DOESN'T FLY"; he swims. He illustrated this by diving into a fishbowl and swimming in it. Evidently the elf was not aware of this misfit bird's handicap, and when he sent him out of the sleigh without that umbrella, well . . . we all know what happened. Some child did NOT get a swimming bird on Christmas morning, but his or her family must have had a nice Christmas dinner.


HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS

CLASSIC LINES OF DIALOGUE:

Oh, heck, the ENTIRE thing is "classic dialogue."

FLAWS:

How The Grinch Stole Christmas (1966) has only one genuine flaw that I am aware of at this point. The flaw is related to poor animation and it occurs 5 minutes into the program when we see the feasting of the Whos in Who-Ville. Rather than spell this one out for you, I'll leave it for you to discover on your own.


F.Y.I. -- If you enjoy the songs in these Christmas Classics as much as I do, you may want to purchase the compact disc “Rudolph, Frosty And Friends Favorite Christmas Songs.” It is an excellent collection that contains all of the best songs from the soundtracks of four of these programs. (HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS and A CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS you’ll need to buy separately.) The songs stand alone as well-produced Holiday tunes.

I wish each and every one of you a Merry CHRISTmas (or a Happy Hanukkah, as the case may be).

I'll close with those immortal words of Tiny Tim:
"Tiptoe through the tulips with me."

Oops! Sorry. Wrong Tiny Tim.
What I meant to say was:
"GOD BLESS US, EVERY ONE!"

[*But speaking of Tiny “Tiptoe Tulip” Tim, please stay tuned into this Blog for a very impotent announcement to be made here in the next week or two. You won’t want to miss it!*]

~ Stephen T. McCarthy
.

4 comments:

mousiemarc said...

Now I don't own all of these but have been doing my best to collect them for you know who as he grows up. Charlie Brown always brings back memories for me (not always the best ones). My parents got drunk one night with some friends when I wasn't even 5 yrs old. I remember it almost like yesterday. My mom didn't want them to drive home drunk with their two little girls. Dana was my age and my only friend. Well the boyfriend of my moms childhood friend punched my 80 lbs. mom in the chest and almost killed her right in front of me. He then took my little friend, her sister, and her my moms friend out of the house. He squeeled out of the driveway. In the distance not a minute later, Squuuuuuuuuuueeel, CRASH. My friend Dana died. My mom laid on the floor unconsicious, my dad was in the bedroom either passed out or too afraid to come out... My mom woke up right after the crash and ran out the door. It gets fuzzy from there, but my mom put me in front of the T.V. to watch Charlie Brown's Halloween special.... Not anywhere as good as the X-mas show for sure, but as good as Charlie Brown is it brings back my first taste of fear, terror, diappointment, and death. I put it out of my head for years but have recently been thinking of it again because of how young my son is. Anyway, Charlie Brown is great and I started watching it on cable for the first time in years the other day. I really enjoyed it, though I only watched the last half. i think I'll pick it up....

Stephen T. McCarthy said...

Hoo-Wee! See if I invite YOU to my next party. To borrow a line from Monty Python: This is supposed to be a joyful occasion.

Nah. Just kiddin' ya, Br'er. It's a shame that these incidents have discolored for you "The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year."

Well, the silver lining (if there is one) is that Dana got to ride the express train to Heaven, while we're still waiting at the bus stop. (And now, to borrow a line from Van Morrison: "Give me my rapture today.")

~ STMcC
<"As a dog returns to his own vomit,
so a fool repeats his folly."
~ Proverbs 26:11>

Anonymous said...

A funny and sweet Blog entry, my friend.

I haven't seen most of these holiday specials for several years, but I remember them with great affection.

Sometimes the flaws are what I love most about shows (and people). If you recall, a lot of the Rocky cartoons were some of the most poorly drawn cartoons ever. Occasionally, Jay Ward even forgot to completely draw the entire character in (missing a leg, etc.).

Thanks for the laughs and Happy Holidays to all.

~The Flying Aardvark~

Stephen T. McCarthy said...

Hokey-Smoke! The Flying Aard has made a public appearance! STOP THE PRESSES!

It's bright out here, huh? Put yer shades on, Aard, that'll help.

>>[A funny and sweet Blog entry, my friend.]<<

Sure! I'm a funny and sweet guy.
(Well, not THAT "sweet"!)

>>[I haven't seen most of these holiday specials for several years, but I remember them with great affection.]<<

For shame! You should own them all. You ain't one a-dem dere comm-U-neests, iz ya?

>>[Sometimes the flaws are what I love most about shows (and people).]<<

Then you should be just crazy about ME!

>>[If you recall, a lot of the Rocky cartoons were some of the most poorly drawn cartoons ever. Occasionally, Jay Ward even forgot to completely draw the entire character in (missing a leg, etc.]<<

The animation was done in Mexico (by a bunch of tequila-soaked cartoonists in sombreros). "After leetle more tequila and leetle siesta, I'm a-gonna keel moose and squirrel."

>>[Thanks for the laughs and Happy Holidays to all.]<<

No! Thank YOU for stopping by and sayin' "Hi." (I didn't make it TOO painful, did I?)

~ STMcC
<"As a dog returns to his own vomit,
so a fool repeats his folly."
~ Proverbs 26:11>