Well, it’s that time of the year again. The time that comes with joy, happiness and nostalgia that you normally only feel when a family shares the event together. Yeah, Christmas too, but I am referring to the time we get to indulge in enormous portions of that now classic movie, “A Christmas Story”.
The movie, which features the unforgettable little Ralphie and the rest of the Parker family, first ran in 1983, making this year the 29th anniversary of the movie many of us grew up with. I remember the first time I saw this movie, my mother and my grandmother took me to the theater to see it, and from that moment on, I have been hooked. But don’t worry if you’re one of those few people who haven’t already seen “A Christmas Story” at least once in your lifetime; you can buy the DVD at the Wal-Mart in Russellville, and there’s always the TBS channel to count on for 24 hour marathons of the show, especially on Christmas Eve.
I’ve probably watched “A Christmas Story” more times than any other movie in my lifetime. I’d like to say I’m tired of it, but I’d be lying. I know I couldn’t handle 24 hours straight of it, but I know I’ll watch it at least 15 times between now and the first of the year with my children. My wife, on the other hand can’t stand “A Christmas Story”. I love my wife more than anything but if I had known when we starting dating that she was not a huge fan of Chic-Fil-A and did not like “A Christmas Story”, I probably would not have asked her to marry me. It just would not be Christmas without my dose of little Ralphie and the 1940’s-era Indiana family.
Ahh, the memories and the anticipation of soon seeing them again. Little Ralphie and his overwhelming desire for a new Daisy Red Ryder BB gun, but his reluctance to ask for it. Ralphie’s dad nervously opening the crate containing his sales award then proudly displaying the risqué leg lamp in the window for all his neighbors to see. The Christmas day turkey and dad anxiously awaiting as the smell titillated his palate and his patience, only to have the dogs invade the house and rush to the kitchen to devour the turkey before Dad could chase them off. Ralphie slipping a bad word in front of his father and then falsely blaming his friend for teaching it to him. His friend got a good thrashing, as we heard on the phone; Ralphie escaped with an unscathed bottom but a mouth literally washed out with soap as punishment. Not just any soap, but “Lifeboy” soap.
We all remember that dire warning to Ralphie, “you’ll shoot your eye out”, after he mustered up the courage to ask mom, dad and even Santa for that coveted Red Ryder BB Gun only to have his dad surprise him on Christmas morning with his wish. We all remember what happened next; he shot his eye. Luckily not out though, thanks to his glasses that were broken by the ricochet BB.
Because of the popularity of the movie, I guess it’s not a surprise that those Daisy Red Ryder BB guns are still being made to this day. So if your kid asks for one, I’m sure you can find them for sale at a store near you. Just make sure to warn them though, “be careful, don’t shoot your eye out.”
I’ll watch “A Christmas Story” again this week. Many of you will too. I know what will happen and pretty much everything that will be said. But I’ll laugh as I always do year after year after year after year.
By the way, if any of you young men in Logan County are seriously thinking about proposing marriage to your girlfriend this Christmas season, ask that girl first of she likes “A Christmas Story” before you pull out that ring.
God Bless and Go Cats!
Rev. Scott Murphy is the Pastor at the First Christian Church in Russellville.