THE SEASON IS HERE-LIKE IT OR DON’T!!

We don’t have to inform you that the season now known as “The Holidays” is already upon us! You already know!! That’s now considered as old news because that season, still known as “Christmas” , has been around as early as the Labor Day weekend!

Since that first weekend is September, a whole lot of stuff has been coming down, from the mid-term election, from the changing of the weather, to the bickering of high(er) prices for almost anything and everything. But this time of year, now already inside what one journalist called it “The Seasonal Bermuda Triangle” is going at full tilt.

There’s the usual antics that take place right now. Now that the Thanksgiving Day dishes have been washed (or at least they should have been, unless one used paper plates and plastic utensils to plop their share of turkey and all of the trimmings), it’s time to continue shopping for those gifts people are supposed to give and get. For those that have been savvy enough, many folks already did their shopping. Thanks to the virtual universe, it’s a whole lot easier to get anything they desire without venturing away from one’s domicile. Get online, pick what you desire, type in that credit card number, hit “send” or something to that effect, and before long, that delivery person will be right at one’s doorstep delivering a box, bag, envelope, or related container with that worldly possession one saw as a pixelated photo on one’s video screen. Done, done, and done!!

Some people have done their shopping already. A few are starting right now. Others won’t start until the eleventh hour. And a number of folks didn’t start or end. They conduct this activity throughout the whole year! 

One person this writer knows of starts their shopping season the day after Christmas, which this year falls on Monday, December 26th. This party heads off to the mall (the “real” version of the mall versus a virtual one) and gets the items deemed worthy enough to give as gifts. From there, the person places the goods inside of a box, labels the box as “Xmas gifts”, and places that box on a shelf inside of a garage. Throughout the year, the person places other goods inside of that same box, and adds boxes to the pile once the first (or second) box is filled up. This retrial continues through the months right up to the Thanksgiving weekend. That same person pulls out the items found in these boxes, wraps them with wrapping paper obtained at garage and estate sales for as little as five cents per roll of paper, and before long, the gifts are given to that person’s gift giving list. After all of that is said and done, then the cycle continues on December 26th. Get the idea??

Thanks to everything costing a whole lot more than what it once was priced for the previous year, some folks are being creative with their gift giving. Another person that’s a colleague of this writer will do a lot of baking this season, creating cookies and related goodies. In fact, yours truly will assist that person in spreading the cheer. I’ll take part in making some cookies from a kit I received from all sources, the U.S. Marines. For their annual Toys For Tots campaign, they provided me with a cookie recipe called “Sgt. Clause Cookies”. Now only they sent the recipe to mer, but they provided three cookie presses. One consists of a star, the second one is an image of an old fashioned train engine (part of the logo for the Toys For Tots campaign), and the third one is the Mariners logo consisting of an eagle perched upon a globe with an anchor leaning toward the right behind the globe! Along with this kit is a glass milk bottle (empty) that has on its side “Marines-Toys For Tots”. So it’s cookies and milk (you provide) courtesy of the Leathernecks. 

But only time will find out folks will be doing their things buying their goods, even though they are paying more for them. But it’s not all about shopping. It’s the moment to take part in what this season is all about. There’s enough Christmas (or “Holiday”) music to beat the band out there. And there are those Christmas movies to embrace found on all forms of media. One can take upon the beloved from It’s A Wonderful Life to A Christmas Story as well as the forgettable! (This writer would rather soak up such “classics” as Santa Claus Conquers The Martians or even The Christmas That Almost Wasn’t starring Paul (“Mr. I Magination”) Tripp!) than other seasonal titles out there!) There’s the never ending supply of Christmas themed rom-coms appearing on The Hallmark Channel, Lifetime, UpTV, etc that tend to have the same plot line presented over and over again that tend to target middle aged women. As the old line goes, give the people what they want!

We’ll continue this essay for the season again, since it makes more sense to debate about it right now rather than, let’s say, in the month of May. Then again, perhaps that would be an ideal time to rant ‘n rave! Whatever…! 

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The Sierra Madre Playhouse presents A PATSY CLINE HOLIDAY CONCERT, featuring Cori Cable Kidder as the title Country & Western vocalist.

In this event, Cori portrays this star that recorded a number of songs that went “crossover” to both the C&W as well as the popular (“pop”) charts during her active years from 1955 through 1963. In this production, Cori as Patsy stands in front of the mic on stage to sing a selection of her hits as well as a few Christmas themed tunes as well, making this program a Christmas theme concert with a few non seasonal tunes tossed in and vice versa. She’s backed by a four piece band consisting of Mike Flick on bass, Jim Miller on percussion, Kevin Tiernan on guitar, with Sean Paxton on the keyboards. Sean also serves as musical director.

This concert (it’s really a concert as there is no “plot” to this show per se verses a standard play) is one that would make one’s spirit bright and merry. It’s also great for those that appreciate Pasty’s musical talent as Cori’s vocal talents are dead on to its original source–not high pitched or low, but unique enough where others in the musical circles attempt to mimic her range and style.

The stage itself has a selection of holiday decor dressed as designed by Orlando de la Paz, never forgetting this time of year. It’s a pleasant program that all can appreciate. 

Patsy Cline is one of the legions whose life and career was cut short. But as long as her music lives on, so will Patsy, and this concert lives toward that point.

A PATSY CLINE HOLIDAY CONCERT, presented by and performs at the Sierra Madre Playhouse, 87 West Sierra Madre Blvd., Sierra Madre until December 23rd. Showtimes are Friday and Saturday nights at 8:00 PM, and Sunday afternoons at 2:30 PM. Other performances take place on Wednesday and Thursday, December 21st and 22nd at 7:30 PM. 

For ticket reservations or for more details, call (626) 355-4318, or online at http://SierraMadrePlayhouse.org

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