Art and the philosophy of life

Free Grayscale Photo of Children Wearing Costumes At A Christmas Presentation Stock Photo

“How’s the Christmas play coming along?” asked the principal.

“How do you think?  We have far too many angels, a Native American, absolutely no wise men, and the baby in the manger is a cat wrapped in a blanket.  No one knows their lines, everyone is giggling, and all the beards are falling off the boys.  Half the kids look as if they’re praying, several children brought dreidels, the star is too small, some of the kids look like they’er in a jazz club, and…”

“So, it’s going well?”

She glared at him.  “I’m two seconds away from quitting and getting a job herding cats, which will be much easier and a lot more fun.”

“Now, Now, Sylvia, they’re just children.”

“No, they aren’t.  They’re monsters who were born to test my ability not to…”

“Just do the best you can.  The parents only come to see their kids, they don’t care if the play is good or bad.”

“Angels?  Why are they even in the play?”

“I’m afraid that’s your area of expertise,” he said, smiling, as he hurried back to his office.

Sylvia took a few deep breaths, then walked into the auditorium.  One of the boys walked up to her and said, “My parents want me to be a wise guy.”

“Tell them you already are,” she said, brushing past him.

She stood in front of the stage, and told the kids to take off their costumes and put them out of sight.  She told one of the girls to release the cat, who hissed, then walked to the side of the stage and watched what was happening.

“Forget everything we were doing.  No angels, no manger, no stars or bearded people.  Just think of what you’re wearing as your costume.”

A girl raised her hand.

“Yes, Betty?”

“I think this is a better idea, and I think we should do a Christmas program to Queen’s music, like WHO WANTS TO LIVE FOREVER, I mean this is all about death, isn’t it?”

“We can do ANOTHER ONE BITES THE DUST,” yelled Tommy.

“After all,” said Pam, “In the end, THERE CAN BE ONLY ONE.”

Sylvia smiled.  “Done.”  She put the music on her phone and started teaching the kids dance steps.  Then she asked how many had Queen T-shirts, and nine kids raised their hands.  I can borrow my mom’s, said one girl and another one pointed to herself and nodded.

All of the kids were paying attention.  All of them were learning the words and dance steps.  Suddenly, everyone was happy and having fun.  Everyone was smiling.  Sylvia took a step back and watched as the children started adding their own steps to the routine.  They pushed each other into positions and told each other what to do.

“Can I still wear my halo?” asked Amy, tugging on Sylvia’s sleeve.

The other kids heard Amy and turned toward her and said, “NO!”

“Fine,” she said, putting her halo on the floor.  “It kind of itched anyway.”  Then she went back to the stage and started dancing.

“There’s no time for us,” sang a boy.  “There’s no place for us.”

“Climate change and violence took our dreams from us,” sang Amy.

“Who wants to live forever?” sang the chorus.  “How can we live forever?  Oohhhhh ooh.”

“There’s no chance for us,” said Brian, coming to the end of the stage.  “It’s all decided for us.  Generation after generation, have all lied to us.”

“Who wants to live forever?” they sang.  “How can we live forever?  Oohhhh ooh.”

“How’s that?” asked Tina.

Sylvia started hugging the kids.  “This is going to be the best Christmas play EVER,” she said.

“It’s more relevant, don’t you think?” asked Judy.

“Absolutely,” said Sylvia.

“Uh,” said Jeanne.  “I think the cat wants a part.”

Two days later, parents filled the seats.

The cat was included in the play, as an extra, and sat center stage, as the curtain went up, or sideways, if truth be told.  The dance routine was outstanding, even if some kids were out of step.  The songs were amazing, and the children put their hearts into every word.

The parents sat in silence.  There was nothing for them to laugh at. No funny parts at all. No silly mistakes, no angels, or kids with beards or dreidels.

As the show was ending, Sylvia stepped forward.

“This Christmas play is honest and true.  The greatest gift we can give to our children, and to ourselves, is a green and healthy planet, filled with diversity and beauty.  Clean air, so inhalers will no longer be needed during classes. Clean water, clean and healthy food, without chemicals, and no GMO’s.  A world of peace, and an end to violence, hatred and discrimination.  A place where children can grow up safe and healthy, in a world without war and corrupt governments.  THIS is what Christmas should be about.”

The kids started clapping and jumping around.  The parents stood and applauded, as well.

The principal, seeing which way the wind was blowing, joined in.  (He was a coward.)

And that’s how one school made a difference in the lives of the children who went there to learn what needed to be done, if they wanted to live, maybe not forever, but a full, happy and healthy life.


Photo:  Suzy Hazelwood




Comments on: "A Christmas Story…School Play" (12)

  1. 👏👏👏🎼💃🏽🕺🎼👏👏👏

  2. LOLOL Love it. Thank you so much. 🙂

  3. 🙂 I love Star Trek. And you got to live with the captain look-alike.

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