Thursday, December 24, 2009

My Christmas Eve Tradition

Is to watch The Crossing and cheer for the Continental Army as it brings shock and awe to the Republic's enemies, 1776-style.

The Battle of Trenton fascinates me as an historical turning point - it was that very rare thing, a tactical operation that had a strategic impact - and, also, I find the movie a good corrective for the schmaltzy sentimentality that starts to get out of control at this point in the holiday season. For weeks now every car radio and shopping mall sound system has been keeping up a steady Little-Drummer-Boy-beat of Rudolph the Red Nosed pear tree, chestnuts roasting over run-over Grandmas, and figgy puddings dressed up like Eskimos. By today, I'm more than ready for a bracing reminder of a Christmas that was made of sterner stuff.

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