Monday, December 1, 2008

The Christmas Skit

Ainsley has written a Christmas skit.

The working title is simply "Skit" and it's rather simple. The main characters are Mary, God, and an angel and it's based on these books Ainsley has been reading at school lately called The Gospels. Perhaps you've heard of them.

She has even cast her play with herself playing the angel, me playing Mary (hahaha) and Jason playing God (BWAHAHAHAHA.) She wants me to buy her some highlighters so that we can highlight our lines because, apparently, this is more important even than costumes and a set.

It's fairly well-written so far as any play adapted by a six-year-old can be well-written. But it's no "The Kidnapping of Rudolfo."

It does not surprise me that Ainsley has written a Christmas skit because writing holiday plays runs in the family. I was hoping she would wait until she was in a high-school Spanish class to express her holiday spirit through drama, but she's getting an early start.

One of the many treasures Jason found when he cleaned out his stored boxes of old folders and papers this summer was a copy of a Christmas skit our Spanish class was supposed to write and perform our sophomore year in high school. This was a favorite assignment of our former Spanish teacher, and she herself usually got written into the action. This skit Jason found from the last year he went to the same high school I did is a lost masterpiece; we wrote it in English, we each took pages and translated it into Spanish, and according to the drafts he found, the Spanish teacher even edited our translations. But sadly that one never saw the light of public performance. Perhaps this was for the best; the plot line was that an alcoholic pedophile Santa comes to an orphanage to get his jollies but is foiled by the clever and knowing antics of the orphans and an enterprising nun.

No, I am not joking. Yes, our Spanish teacher was going to let us do this for a grade. And tape us doing it. And I think play the nun, which was a very wink, wink, nudge, nudge bit of high-school irony.

But wait! There's more!

The next year, after Jason and his screenwriting gift had left us, my good friend penned a script for a Christmas skit that actually was videotaped and still survives to this day: "The Kidnapping of Rudolfo." Or Rudolph, if you speak English.

There are some parts of this famed skit that I would be proud to show you and admit being a part of the creation of. The basic plot is rather creative and a true product of the political and social climate of the early 1990s. In an effort to ruin Christmas for Americans, Saddam Hussein kidnaps Rudolph and hold him ransom. Once President Bush and Vice President Quayle are alerted, they work with the United Nations and with Santa and his elves to launch a dangerous mission into enemy territory to free Rudolph. Also, I think Ronald Reagan was involved in the rescue, but I think that was mostly because our main screenwriter had a Reagan mask.

The parts I am not proud of involve a subplot with a prostitute and Dan Quayle and some not-subtle sexual innuendo. This is probably because our Spanish teacher played the prostitute and dressed the part and then showed the video proudly to many of the other teachers in our school. But I digress.

Writing, translating, and filming that thing took up pretty much the entire time between Thanksgiving and Christmas break. I remember filming my last scene (I was a news anchor who reported both the breaking news of Rudolph's possible demise and the news of his daring rescue) at 7pm in our Spanish classroom the night before the thing was due.

The special effects were what you might expect from poor kids with a VHS camera and two VCRs (the big kidnapping scene consisted of a toy stuffed Rudolph, some fishing line, and some edited-in explosion footage from something or other our director had taped off of TV) but it had a lot of heart.

Also a lot of boobs thanks to our teacher.

It used to be Christmas tradition to trot that video out every few years and look at how young, thin, and stupid we used to be. We used to like to show that to the people in our lives who didn't go to school with us, but at some point we realized that the whole thing is both childishly goofy and seriously inappropriate. But it has been a while, and it may be time to go back and reminisce about a simpler but dirtier time (DD, I'm looking at you, oh ye holder of a copy.)

But first, I have to go get my Mary on.


Robert K. said...

I'm waiting for "The Kidnapping of Rudolfo" to get uploaded to YouTube so I can bask in the glory of this lost masterpiece.

Library Lady said...

You mean, you missed out on one of the Centre very special showings?

There are those out there who would probably destroy one of the VHS copies to keep it from getting "leaked" online...If I can ever get a digital copy, I may have to post it privately somewhere to protect the innocent.

Karen said...

I have seen said skit. And just reading your description here made me laugh all over again. It definitely needs to be on YouTube. ;)

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