Tonight, Christmas Eve, after rewatching A Christmas Carol for the 400th time, I learned a valuable lesson: you should ask the people you care about if they have any crippled children. Apparently, people sometimes have crippled children, and they don’t want anyone to find out, so they don’t voluntarily talk about them or let them go out in public. Forget trying to casually work the question into your conversation. You have to come straight out and ask them, “Do you have any crippled children?” If they say no, don’t offer to cripple one of their kids.
The movie is based on the novella of the same name by Charlie “Sideburns” Dickens. There have been several different versions of the movie made over the past century, but I like the one with Captain Picard as Scrooge. He scoots off back to the Enterprise right at the end, I imagine.
Ebenezer Scrooge is visited by four ghosts who try to convince him to give up his miserly, money worshipping ways. They succeed, and Scrooge celebrates Christmas by having dinner with his estranged nephew, Fred, and Fred’s wife, Mrs. Fred (Fred something, but not Flintstone). The lesson here is to spend all of your money on forgiveness and redemption a short time before your scheduled death. During dinner, Fred and his wife discover that Ebenezer may be less of a cheapskate now, but he’s still the racist, bigoted, classist, and opinionated old-fart of an uncle that nobody wants to hear from during Christmas dinner.
The first ghost to visit Scrooge is his dead former partner, Jacob Marley. Jacob wears a chin strap to hold his jaw in place, kind of like how non-dead people today wear their anti-covid face masks under their chin, but for a different reason.
One of the other ghosts Scrooge is visited by is the Ghost of Christmas Present, and that is the reason we give people presents at Christmas. It makes the ghost happy.
You better watch out, you better not shout, menopause is coming to town. Merry Christmas!