Traveling Dog Lady: Christmas Traditions

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Christmas Traditions

I had a nice surprise tonight. My favorite movie of all time,
"It's A Wonderful Life" was on TV, but I didn't know it was
on, since it was on last week, too, and the network no longer shows the movie 1,000 times between Thanksgiving and Christmas!

Ever since I can remember, I have always wrapped Christmas presents while watching this movie. It is my one, and only, Christmas tradition. Last year, Christmas was different because Gil was home, and we did watch "It's A Wonderful Life" but I wrapped presents some other time. Tonight, by sheer coincidence, the movie was on, and I still had a few presents to wrap.

We had dinner, and afterwards I went upstairs to wrap the last remaining gifts. There was 45 minutes remaining to the movie -- the best 45 minutes, starting at the part where George Bailey tries to jump off the bridge and is saved by Clarence, the angel who needs to earn his wings. George Bailey declares to Clarence, "I wish I'd never been born", and Clarence grants his wish (to which "God", we think, gets a teensy bit angry). The remainder of the movie is spent watching George come to grips with the fact that he's never been born. As a result, Mr. Martini doesn't own the local bar, Mary is an old maid librarian, the old Granville house is unfit for habitation, and Harry Bailey has a gravestone in the cemetery having drowned because George wasn't there to save him. Harry was unable to save all the men in the war because George wasn't there to save Harry. The list goes on and on. This is about the point where we all start crying, and by the end of the movie we are blubbering idiots, as we read Clarence's note to George while a little bell rings on the Christmas tree. George's little daughter Zu-Zu declares, "Look Daddy! Teacher says, every time a bell rings, an angel gets his wings!"

The most important part of this tale is Clarence's note to George: "No man is a failure who has friends."

I finished wrapping the last present, just as the movie was ending. Wrapping my presents while watching my favorite movie is a tradition for me, and one I hope to do forever.

Merry Christmas

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