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Pandemic Elf: Holiday Movies

Hello, I am the Pandemic Elf. I am your trail guide through the Holiday Path winding through the Pandemic Forest. My job is to point out detours, sinkholes, and other dangers so they don't catch you unawares. 

Today's issue: Holiday Movies!

The tradition is our family is that the first holiday show to watch is the How the Grinch Stole Christmas. The original and the best, the 1/2 hour long special voiced by Boris Karloff. It is so much our family tradition that when my son was a senior in high school, and way too cool for family things, I jokingly asked him if he wanted us to wait for him the next year (when he would be away at college.) He sort of smirked and said nothing as we watched it. Then that night, as he headed for bed, he paused at the foot of the stairs. "Wait for me," he said softly. 

We settled in, after our Thanksgiving dinner, for this year's viewing. Aforementioned son, now 24, was staying away because he is a very good and ethical citizen, and takes Dr. Fauci's advice seriously. 

But the rest of us watched the beautiful little morality play about how Christmas doesn't come from a store, it's all about being together with people you care about, holding hands in one giant circle and singing. Fah who foraze! Dah who doraze!

Well, ____ (insert expletive of your choice).

Well, THAT is kind of ironic. The three things you really MUST. NOT. DO. in this time of covid-19 are as follows, and I quote: 

1. Be together with others.

2. Hold hands.

3. Sing with others.

Stink! Stank! Stunk! 

Later on in the weekend, we watched Elf. The message wasn't quite as ironic, but both The Husband and I expressed discomfort at watching Jovie and Buddy walk, carefree and joyous, through the crowds of New York. It's just impossible, I think for most of us to suspend our disbelief. I mean, an elf from the North Pole, Santa and his sleigh ... completely believable. I mean, even narwhals are real, so I've been told, though I'm still a little doubtful. 

But walking through a crowd, no one wearing a mask? It looks ... naked. Unsafe. Like watching someone on a roller coaster without the safety bar pulled down. 


Look, the movies were all made in the Before Times. And so prepare to be pulled up a little short. To be reminded that what we are living in right now is decidedly not normal. 

When you are ready to face that full-on, and maybe even deal a little with your grief about how hard this is, grab a box of tissues, plan a pity party, and watch Meet Me in St. Louis

This is the musical that the wonderful song, "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" comes from. I have had issues with the sanitized version of the song for many years ... and 2020 is the YEAR THAT PROVES ME RIGHT ON THIS. 

Because the words as they are sung in the movie are exactly what are needed this year. It's like the song was written by someone who was living in 2020 and had a time machine and went back in time to give it to Judy Garland. 

Are you ready for this? 

Got tissues? 

Have yourself a merry little Christmas, let your heart be light
Next year all our troubles will be out of sight
Have yourself a merry little Christmas, make the yule-tide gay
Next year all our troubles will be miles away

Once again as in olden days
Happy golden days of yore
Faithful friends who are dear to us
Will be near to us once more
Someday soon, we all will be together, if the fates allow
Until then, we'll have to muddle through somehow

So have yourself a merry little Christmas now

So, here's to muddling through somehow. And lifting a prayer that next year all our troubles will be out of site, and faithful friends will be -- physically, even! -- near to us once more. 

p.s. The original lyrics were even more somber. "Have yourself a merry little Christmas. It may be your last..." Let's do all we can from making that one relevant. Wear your mask. Stay out of crowds. Sing only in your own home, around the people you live with. 

But do sing. 


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