Editorial board Christmas letter: Family, food and film

I love A Christmas Story. I love the “major-award” leg lamp, “soap poisoning” and the “Red Ryder carbine-action, 200-shot range model air rifle with a compass in the stock and this thing which tells time.”

I have loved this movie since it came out — 1983. I saw it twice that year, a real extravagance. I even remember where I was sitting in Rexburg Idaho’s Paramount Theater the first time I saw it.

I have no idea how many times I have seen it since — many, many I am sure.

I love it, so my kids have been raised on it as well.

It has become somewhat of a cult movie at our house and we make references to it all year-round. It’s not uncommon to hear the following phrases around our house in July: “My mother had not had a hot meal for herself in 15 years” or “Fragile — it must be Italian” or “You used all the glue on purpose.”

For the last several years, my son has been giving me Christmas Story figurines for Christmas presents. I have pretty much the complete set now. Last year he gave me the Christmas Story board game.

One of our family traditions — that we totally stole from some friends — is to watch the movie a few days before and eat Chinese food.

I love this movie even more as I have gotten older. I love the adult narrator looking back at how his kid-self interprets events from childhood. And I like Chinese food. And I like my family — most of the time. But I really love that combination of all of those things.

We’re expanding the tradition. This year we followed the movie by playing A Christmas Story the board game while munching on our fortune cookies. That, to me, is a wonderful life.