Thursday, December 20, 2018

Jesus Mary and Joseph

Everybody recalls their nativity role
 (Photo by Chris Sowder on Unsplash)
Hands up everyone who remembers what role you played in your grade-school Christmas pageant.

Hah! Just as I thought.

You all do! Rather, we all do.

Never mind that it was way more than 50 years ago, I still recall me dressing up as Saint Joseph and keeping watch over Baby Jesus.

I remember the brown cloak I was wearing and how nervous I was.

I also remember another really important part: And that is the little girl who played Mary.

She was stunning.


"Mary" had long dark hair and big brown eyes and I remember that when she visited our house before the pageant, my late mom Huena commented on her beautiful dark skin and "Mary" attributed it to a diet that included lots of olive oil. Or pasta. I forget which. But I still think those two food groups are good for your complexion.

I was six.

Here's why I'm telling you this.

Yesterday, on my way to work, I heard a couple of  local deejays toying with the idea that we all grow into the characters we played in the Christmas pageant, and I think they might be on to something.

"Shepherds?" the female announcer said. "All of them are serious stoners."

One of the guys on the show said he was jealous of his older brother who upstaged all the other kids because he played a dog in the stable and raced around the stage licking the other characters and lifting his leg to pee against the stable wall. Sounds inspired to me.

When I got to work, I told my pal Richard about the deejays.

Richard--and he's a few years older'n me--said that he had been Joseph in his pageant but things went off the rails early. Milliseconds before Richard delivered his one big line--"my wife is with child and we need a place to sleep," the joker playing the innkeeper leapt out from behind the door shouting "No room at the inn!" Joseph started giggling and couldn't stop for the rest of the show.

I totally get that.

I work alongside Richard every day. Pretty much all we do is try to make each other laugh.

I've always had lots of time for St. Joseph. Here's a guy married to a beautiful woman; she has a Kid  (upper-case K cuz it's Jesus) and even though Joe had nothing to do with the "making" of said Kid, if you catch my drift, he loves Mary and the child all the same and he's a good dad, trying to keep everybody happy while his wife and Kid make all the big decisions.

You don't have to be a biblical scholar to know that his biggest moment is when he asks for a room at the inn and gets turned down.

God knows we've all been there. You've been driving all day; everybody in the car wants to stop but the road is one no-vacancy sign after another so you power on, hopeful that around the next bend, something will be available and for some reason this is all your fault and you're thinking everybody in the car loathes your very soul. But I digress.

In real life, I happen to know that Mary from my pageant left St. Albert's shortly after grade one then later in life went on to do some runway modeling and when I ran into her in mid-high school, it was almost as if she'd forgotten me.

St. Joseph should be patron saint of the friend zone.

So I ask. Did you grow up to be your character in the pageant?  My son Michel did. He was Jesus.

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