Last week I was at work and I saw a colleague that I haven’t seen in a long time. She was really busily walking somewhere and I was really busily walking somewhere (did you know that sometimes I catch myself at work doing a very scary speedwalk? It is the prissiest rushed walk ever and I am embarrassed on behalf of me and my whole family whenever I realize I am doing it because the priss reaches across generations) and we were passing in the hallway. We spotted each other right at the last minute and she said “oh hey!” and I said “great to see you!” and she sort of reached out (for a handshake? a hug? a pat on the arm? a high five?) and so I reached out but we both kept walking past each other and neither of us knew why we were reaching so as I passed her I sort of grabbed her forearm in what I hope was a grasp of warmth but she was sort of waving so, well, to be honest, she smacked me pretty good and this about sums up my whole month so far. Just that whole exchange. That’s what I stand for this December.
There is also the possibility that she clocked me on purpose. Sure, true.
As you know, I am not a huge fan of Christmas. I have given it a good college try some years, but it has just never seeped in and I am just going to have to face it that I just can’t get it up for Santa. (I just made you shrivel up a little with that mental picture, didn’t I?). There are people who gather around the tree and hang stockings and eat turkey legs and hamhocks or whatever the hell it is on Christmas Eve, and there are people who get Chinese takeout, and I am solidly in group B. I think, as a grown ass woman, I am finally starting to be ok with this, but it’s hard. I know it’s a dumb thing to say (that it’s hard), but whatever. Feel free to judge me. I just think that for some of us who have never quite felt a part of majority culture on a regular day, there is nothing quite like the Christmas season to make us feel like outsiders. It’s the only time of year where I get sad about not being invited to things or included in yuletide infrastructure, but then confused because I don’t really want to have yuletide infrastructure, do I? I mean, really, do I? I am asking. Because I never have figured that one out. Mostly I am ok with it but I think there will always be that 7-year-old me that feels like I am pressing my nose up against the window, looking at Christmas, knowing it’s not for me.
Hey, I just admitted something really embarrassing on the interwebs. Wheeee! Just know that I know it’s stupid. And stop looking at me about it. STOP LOOKING.
Anyhoodle. The one thing that I do like and can heartily participate in for Christmas is to take in holiday-related pop culture. Surprise! I like watching movies and stuff. Did you know this?
Here are some Christmas things I have been tasting. I have lots but I shall limit to 5.
Christmas in Connecticut
Barbara Stanwyck, the only thing that I feel sad about regarding you is that the first time I encountered you was when you were playing that creepy old lady in The Thorn Birds. Of all things. Little did I know the bastion of awesomeness that came before until I was in my twenties. The shame of it! Carl from Casablanca and Schultz from The Great Dictator are in this one too, which can never be a bad thing.
Everybody sing! “I feel it in my fangers, I feel it in my toooooes…”
Ok, so remember I told you once, a very long time ago, about the crush I had, an even longer time ago, on a boy I unfortunately called Taco when I was 15 years old? There was a significant evening I had with Taco, where we were at a party sitting next to each other on a couch with our friends, watching a movie, and his hand was next to my hand, and he pressed the back of his hand onto the back of my hand, and my knickers went up in flames because of it. I call it the Famous Knuckle Makeout. Anyway, the relevant thing here is that I remember that the movie we were watching during this event was Holiday Inn. It is a nice memory. The other night, I made Nordic Boy and Biogirl watch this with me, thinking it would be a lovely way to keep my Christmas in Connecticut feelings going. All of this is preface to say that YOU GUYS BING CROSBY BROKE MY HEART. Because he does a very long, very upsetting song in that movie in full on blackface. I know, I know, it was part of the times back then blah blah things were shitty that way. But dudes! I just! Oy. How could I have not remembered Bing blacking up from my night with Taco? His knuckles were just that overpowering I guess. Oh Bing. Not even cool. Irving Berlin, I blame you also.
Holiday in Handcuffs
I have been partaking in my usual amounts of Hallmark Christmas movies (or should I say Hallmark style, since Lifetime and Ion and others are getting in on this action too), and this one stars Mario Lopez and Sabrina the Teenage Witch and it was really weird. Sabrina’s boyfriend breaks up with her right before Christmas and so she has no one to take home to meet her parents so she picks up a fake gun and kidnaps a cute man (Mario) in a restaurant and makes him meet her parents. I guess we are supposed to think: WACKY! Which, mission accomplished. I really loved it a lot and when I say that I mean that I am totally JKing you.
A Christmas Tale (Un Conte de Noel)
This movie is the Frenchest shit I have ever seen in my life. It stars Catherine Deneuve as a mom who has just learned that she has cancer and all of her grown children come home for the holiday and there is lots of introspection and speaking in soft tones about life’s absurdities. Also, it is about 5 million minutes long. I’m not saying it wasn’t a good movie, but festive it certainly was not.
What are some other holiday movies that I should watch, especially ones that maybe get forgotten about? Email them to me or tell me in the comments.