Wednesday, December 24, 2003


I've had the opportunity to attend not one but TWO kid Christmas programs this year. Like the superiority of Charlie Brown's Christmas to all the celeb razzle-dazzle xmas numbers, there's nothing like a nice amateurish children's Christmas program held together with rubber bands and tape to make you feel like maybe, just this year, you might be able to get in the proper yuletide mood.

The first was a dance "recital" that while, not strictly Christmas themed, sent the little pink-clad ballerina-hopefuls to tumble and twirl to a number of Christmas music chestnuts. The teacher/toddlerwrangler was hugely pregnant but gamely mimed the moves to help her confused charges through their numbers. One little sugarplum spent about half her number adjusting her tutu. Among the parental paparazzi was one James Lileks who posted a snapshot of his progeny here.

The other was an honest-to-goodness musical Christmas Program put on by a local K-8 Catholic school. The kindergarteners were adorable in their low budget tinsel halos and paper accordion wings. Afterwards, one of the moms I knew pointed out a little boy and confided that he was definitely *not* typecast. But oh what a difference nine years makes! The eighth graders consisted of a bunch of beautiful vampy girls (one looked ready to belt out a number at some Las Vegas casino) and greasy pudge pot boys who grinned and elbowed each other. I vaguely remember this from my youth but finally getting an outsider perspective on it makes the whole situation look tragic.

I feel my own Christmas tree embodies the entire spectrum. Bedecked with homemade snowmen and tinsel, it is both earnest and slutty. Now to await Santa...


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