Friday, December 18, 2009

Past, Present, and Future - It Keeps Carolling

Just think: on this day, December 18th, in 1843, the world had yet to meet Ebenezer Scrooge, or Tiny Tim, or Bob Cratchit. Readers and Dickens-ians alike would have to wait one more day for what would be Charles Dickens' heartwarming tale of what, not who, 'the Christmas spirit' really is. According to Garrison Keillor's "The Writer's Almanac," Dickens' previous novel had been a flop and he needed some success to warm his bed. He thought that a holiday themed tale would do the trick. And do the trick it did. It has all the fixings for a good Christmas story: family, loneliness, ghosts, parties, lost love, children, financial woes, forgiveness and, ultimately, the gift of giving. An absolute precursor to cinematic classics like "It's A Wonderful Life," the story is timeless in its message: life is beautiful, so much in fact, that all we must be is grateful.

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