December 17, 2018
Email? Why, of course! We love to hear your comments, trivia answers or whatever pops into your mind. Find us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll take note of your contribution in our next posting.
Oh, by the way, we’ll take next Monday (Christmas Eve day) off, so our next posting here will be New Year’s Eve Day December the thirty-one.
Welcome to Week #379 of Typing Until We Get It Right, Christmas Edition, brought to you in part by a generous grant from the Santa’s Elves Benevolent Association, who would like to reassure you that Santa really does not know personally if you’ve been naughty or nice. But he is filled in by the elves who listen to you regularly via your phone and TV. Yes, Santa does keep up with the latest technological advances. So, govern yourself accordingly. Little elves have big ears.
I’ve been thinking about some of my more memorable Christmases over the years, aside from the childhood ones, of course, which were pretty good in their own right. Probably the first ‘adult memory’ was the Christmas season of 1964 when I was a young radio personality with a whole six months of experience. Since supervision of our evening rock and roll show was pretty lax, the Program Director just said, okay, for the final two weeks before Christmas you play Christmas music every other song. Pick whatever you want, he said. That was it.
I was in heaven. I would intersperse the latest Beatles or Dave Clark Five hit with ‘Little Saint Nick’ by the Beach Boys, or maybe the Chipmunk’s Christmas song. Alvinnnn!!! I conscientiously tried to put in a Mormon Tabernacle Choir or Andy Williams number every once in a while, but I kept coming back to Homer and Jethro’s version of ‘Baby It’s Cold Outside,’ or something from the Ventures Christmas album. And, of course, our listeners just had to have another replay of ‘Little Saint Nick,’ which I played three times one night during a ninety- minute rock show. A couple of the ‘girl groups’ of the day had Christmas singles, too, but I don’t remember any titles. Suffice it to say, you didn’t hear much from The Ray Conniff Orchestra and Chorus on our show that year. I DID occasionally play Steve and Edie’s version of ‘Happy Holidays,’ but they were hot at the time.
My next memorable Christmas was probably the one I spent at the 43rd Surgical Hospital in Korea in 1971, running the Admissions office while awaiting my transfer to the American Forces Korea Radio and TV Network, thirty miles south of us in Seoul. The hospital food service folks whipped up a great Christmas dinner, and the mess hall was all decked out in seasonal glory, with a big old native Korean Christmas tree, of course. The Enlisted Mens’ club (a short stagger away) had a Korean band that night and I recall their hilarious attempts to perform a Christmas song or two for the guys. Oriental cultures have a hard time pronouncing ‘Rs’ and ‘Ls,’ so you can imagine how ‘Jingle Bells’ turned out. But they were good-hearted guys and excellent musicians, too, so a great time was had by all.
My next one was Sally’s and my first Christmas as ‘young marrieds’ in 1975. We lived in an apartment complex at 20th and Washington, a magnificent three-rooms-worth, for the grand sum of $110 bucks a month. Complete with a mouse, too, but I don’t think he showed up at Christmas. We decorated a nifty tree and took about ninety-nine pictures of ourselves and Sally’s dog, Mazurka. Christmas Day with her Mom and Dad was a lot of fun, too. A month or so ago I ran across some of those pictures mentioned above, images I hadn’t seen since 1976. My first reaction was, who ARE these people around a Christmas tree? Then I realized they were us, just a ‘leetle’ younger, well, more than a ‘leetle’. But who’s counting when you’re having fun?
Merry Christmas to you and yours!
Okay, let’s see what’s up in the trivia department…
Terry was first in with the ‘aluminum tree’ in response to question about trendy trees of the ‘50s and ‘60s. Yeah, I remember the tree you were talking about. They were still using it in the KVGB lobby for a few years in the ‘70s, complete with rotating multi-colored light. Pretty snappy.
Roger got the ‘aluma-tree’ also. Mark guessed ‘silver tinsel tree’ or other artificial tree. Good enough for me. And do you remember the flocked fake trees, available in white and pink and maybe a few other colors?
In other business, Terry related memories of his Lionel train set, complete with ‘smoke’. Uptown! Terry also recalled having, at various times, Tinker Toys and an Erector Set, and later a Kodak camera and a BB gun, the latter contributing to a marked decrease in the sparrow population on their farm.
Okay, four remaining questions, complete with a Christmas Bonus Hint:
Who was the ‘problem child’ in the Lincoln administration? Hint: He thought HE should be President instead.
Name the second oldest sporting goods manufacturer. HINT: the sport involves a small ball.
Name the edible confection (HINT: great on pie, come Thanksgiving) that can soothe sunburn and condition lifeless hair.
Name the title of the popular Christmas song that mentions a woman’s full name. (HINT: there was an unfortunate incident involving a horse.)
Okay, let’s try one more! What part did a fragrant gum resin play in the traditional Christmas story? (No hint; this one’s too easy.)
Once again, all the best to you for Christmas and New Year’s. We’ll have a new posting here on Monday December 31st. Until then, send along an email or two to email@example.com.