Required Viewing by Scribe

Required Viewing - Scribe


Notes: I think I saw Rudolph, the Red Nosed Reindeer every year from when it debuted till when I entered college. I still love it. I Sentinelized While You Were Sleeping.


Jim: (Has just brought in the mail) "Since when do we take Dish TV Times?"

Blair: (Bustles in from the bathroom, holding out his hand) "It came? Good. I was hoping it would get here before the prime viewing season started."

Jim: (Holds the magazine away from him) "I asked a question."

Blair: "Last month, man. I suddenly realized that Christmas was creeping up on us, and if I wanted the issue that covered December, I'd better enroll us now."

Jim: (Hands over the magazine) "Why? We get a television guide every day in the newspaper, or we can pick up a weekly one at any corner store."

Blair: "Not one like this. It gives us the listings for everything for a solid month. This way we can plan in advance."

Jim: "Plan--? You mean to tell me that you're going to plan a month's worth of television viewing?"

Blair: "No. I mean to tell you that we're going to plan a month's worth of television viewing."

Jim: "Hey, you can leave me out of this lunacy. As long as I see the Jags games, I could care less."

Blair: (Is flipping through the magazine) "So you won't mind if I watch Rudolph, the Red Nosed Reindeer when it's on opposite It's a Wonderful Life?"

Jim: "Give me that!" (Takes magazine and stares at it) "It isn't. They're on totally different days."

Blair: "I was messing with you, but that should prove that we need to give this consideration. You should have seen the look in your eyes when you thought you were going to have to miss your yearly dose of schmaltz."

Jim: "It is not schmaltz! It's a classic."

Blair: "It's classic schmaltz. Don't start to steam, Jim. I love it, too. After all, I grew up on Sesame Street."

Jim: "What?"

Blair: "The cop and the taxi driver--Bert and Ernie." (Pause) "You just got a 'my God, I never thought of that' look on your face. So, that movie definitely goes on the list, right up there with Rudolph."

Jim: "Do you have to watch Rudolph? I have to tell you--that dentist elf sort of creeps me out."

Blair: "Two words--Burl Ives."

Jim: "Oh, yeah. I guess I can tolerate the weird dentally obsessed midget for Burl." (Sings) "Silver and gold, silver and gold, mean so much more when you see silver and gold decorations on every Christmas tree..." (Blair applauds) "Thank you."

Blair: "I don't know why you don't like Herbie. He's just trying to follow his dream."

Jim: "Did you see what he did to the Abominable Snowman? Gum-city. Makes me shudder just to think about it." (Jim has been turning pages) "Oh, good. They haven't got anything opposite the Charlie Brown Christmas special."

Blair: "We're definitely watching that one, if only for Lucy's reaction when Snoopy lays a big, wet one on her. And we need to watch A Christmas Carol."

Jim: "Which version? I've just glanced through this, and I've seen at least four of them, including that Bill Murray comedy."

Blair: "Scrooged! I almost wet myself when Carol Kane creamed Murray with that toaster. That one for sure, and I like the musical--the one that has Thank You Very Much.

Jim: (He's still flipping pages) "I'd completely forgotten how many traditional programs there are around Christmas. I need to watch White Christmas, too. Danny Kaye always amazes me when he does those tongue-tripping songs without stuttering all over himself."

Blair: "And I want to watch The Santa Claus. There are a lot of in-your-face yucks, but I think maybe the funniest part is when the people at the meeting are ordering lunch and it's all power food--pasta, salads with dressing on the side... Then Tim starts to order and just keeps adding, and adding, and adding..." (Blair is peering over Jim's shoulder) "While You Were Sleeping. I think that's going to turn out to be a new classic. I like that movie. So you can see why I ordered the guide?" (Jim is silent, still flipping pages) "Jim? Will you admit it was a good idea?"

Jim: (Folds the magazine) "I'll get the beer. You bring the notepad and pencil, and we'll start to work out a schedule." (He heads toward the kitchen)

Blair: "Ho, ho, ho."

The End

Back to Stories

Acknowledgments: Art by Candygram, beta by Elaine, thank you to both of them.