Good Times – Letter to Santa

Today on Good Times, find out exactly what Karli wants for Christmas and learn how to write your own letter to Santa!

–Additional Tunes by Kevin MacLeod–

Watch more Good Times here!

Support our writers on Patreon

Advertisements

Good Times – What is Hanukkah?

Christmas isn’t the only holiday this month, that’s why we say HAPPY HOLIDAYS! On today’s special segment of Shalom Y’all we talk to our friend Sarah to learn what Hanukkah is all about!

–Additional Tunes–
Kevin MacLeod

Watch more Good Times here!

Support our writers on Patreon

Christmas Song of the Week!

As the holiday season approaches, we at The Annual are dedicated to keeping you in Christmas spirit by highlighting a classic Christmas Tune every week. Here’s our second hit!

Paul McCartney’s Wonderful Christmas Time was released years before I was born, making it as timeless a classic as Rudolf The Red-nosed Reindeer, Frosty the Snowman, and Do They Know It’s Christmas Time At All? I’ve been listening to it my whole life and I can’t imagine a single Christmas without it.

As soon as Black Friday comes around, I start cranking up that sweet sweet synth. “Bow-bow-bow-bow/wowowowow, Bow-bow-bow-bow/wowowowow” a sound as festive as sleigh bells. It has been so engrained as a holiday tune that I’ll often hear other songs featuring bells and a synthesizer (Always Something There To Remind Me by Naked Eyes) and feel as if snow ought to be falling and I ought to be shopping.

Of course, the song rings true for my own childhood, as I was once a Christian child on Christmas eve, singing songs with all the other Christian children. It’s very likely that we practiced all year long, and if we didn’t, it at least felt like it as I was never a comfortable or confident singer. While McCartney didn’t quite trust his choir of children with anything more than onomatopoeia, it was true that the youngest of children’s choirs could scarcely be trusted with actual lyrics, something we made up for with our absurd cuteness. That said, the few lyrics the children’s choir did have were often memorized, a cut above the skills of the adult choir. So there!

This week, let us all gather ’round the hearth and sing that classic song! DING-DONG-DING-DONG-DING-DONG-DING! ooOOO! oooOOOOOOO! DO-DO! DO-DO! DO-DO-DO!

Kevin Cole

Good Times – Finding the Perfect Christmas Tree

Not sure what kind of Christmas Tree to get for you home? Today on Good Times, Karli helps you find the perfect Christmas Tree! Whether you’re feeling down, or you don’t celebrate Christmas at all, she’ll find the tree for you AND teach you how to cut it down!

–Additional Music from Kevin Macleod(Credits in video)–

Watch more Good Times here!

Support our writers on Patreon

Christmas Song of the Week!

As the holiday season approaches, we at The Annual are dedicated to keeping you in Christmas spirit by highlighting a classic Christmas Tune every week. Here’s our first hit!

Christmas time. Christmas-time. Christmastime. A time of year when families come together, when people celebrate one another, when gifts are given to show that you care for someone other than yourself. What words could be used to describe it? Joyous. Happy. Wonderful. A Wonderful Christmastime.

One of the best Christmas songs – and subsequently, one of the most over-played Christmas songs – is “Wonderful Christmastime” by Paul McCartney, and for good reason.

When you turn on the 24/7 Christmas radio station (97.1 Wash FM, for DC locals) each holiday season, what are you looking for? Perhaps, a reminder of good times past. Paul McCartney has certainly passed the height of his popularity, but Wonderful Christmastime reminds us of how good he used to be, and how good The Beatles used to be, and how their songs were really good so, so long ago, and their solo stuff was not and is not very good. Christmas is all about reminiscing, and this song drives that point home succinctly.

The song is very catchy and easy to remember. There are only 45 different words in the entire song, with the chorus repeated six times. SIX! If you aren’t having a Wonderful Christmastime by the time the song is over, put it on repeat, and turn up the volume; your bells will be jingled after the fourth or fifth repetition. Plus, it has that early 80’s synth-style beat, making you feel like you are about to watch a buddy-cop action movie. And the sleigh bells! A staple of all classic Christmas songs; if you don’t have the sleigh bells, you don’t have a hit! Give the people what they want, Paul does.

Christmastime is about family, and what says family more than children? The choir of children singing in Wonderful Christmastime invokes a feeling of togetherness. Do you hate family? Do you hate children? Do you hate other people being happy? Well then go celebrate Festivus you jerk! McCartney doesn’t even let them sing for very long; a total of 17 seconds if you count the “harmonizing” that is attempted. You can’t even listen to these kids long enough to hate them. Paul brings up the children later, saying they “practiced all year long,” and doesn’t let them sing again RIGHT AFTER THAT or in the rest of the song. I mean, those kids practiced all year long to sing the words “ding-dong” and “oooo” and you can’t let them have that? God, what kind of monster are you? You can’t spend 17 SECONDS of your precious Christmastime on these children who worked so hard to make you happy? That’s cold, man. That’s really cold…

Any who, while you are creating new memories with your friends and family this holiday season, or when giving gifts with loved ones and co-workers, or while sitting along in your studio apartment watching those rascally Home Alone robbers get all beat up and mangled by a child, try to remember what this time of year is all about – listening to the same 12 or 15 Christmas songs every time you get in the car or turn on your iTunes playlist. Make sure Wonderful Christmastime by Paul McCartney is one of those non-stop repeating titles, because it isn’t Christmastime unless it is Wonderful.

Unless you hate kids. You jerk.

“Wonderful Christmastime” by Paul McCartney – probably playing right now on 97.1 Wash FM, DC’s only station for non-stop Christmas music.

TM Scholtes

Support our writers on Patreon

Why I, Too, Will Be Boycotting The Mall of America This Xmas

This Christmas, many are calling for a total boycott of the famed Mall of America due to their decision to employ a Black Santa. I grew up with White Santa, but unlike many boycotters, I understand that Santa is merely a social construct.

However, I will not be shopping at The Mall of America this year, just as I have chosen not to do ever since I learned about this capitalist wonderland while watching Mary Kate and Ashley’s Mall Party as a child. I have chosen to boycott the mall on the sheer premise of practicality, you expect me to travel 15 hours to Minnesota to get my holiday shopping done? No thanks. At that rate, my relatives will be getting photographs of me sitting on Black Santa’s lap and nothing else from me. I can purchase more meaningful gifts by supporting small businesses like Amazon.com.

I will be extending this boycott to all malls. They’re simply too crowded during the holidays and mall managers seem content not to change that. I can barely stand to set foot in a mall at 10% capacity. Who can function in a crowded location with such an unclear flow of foot traffic. Wherever I stand, I’m in someone’s way it’s awful for my already low self-esteem. Call me a special snowflake but I will not be enjoying the artificial snowflakes at the Mall this year or any other.

Bless all of you who venture out to malls this holiday season, but I will be wrapped in a blanket on my sofa while the gift steadily trickle in, pre-wrapped, thanks to various internet vendors.

DISCLAIMER: I will void this boycott of Senator Al Franken is willing to meet me at the Mall of America so that we may shop together and become best pals.

Kevin Cole

Support our writers on Patreon

Regarding the appointment of Ben Carson to Housing and Urban Development

I’ve been called out a few times thanks to Ben Carson’s recent cabinet appointment. This is largely due to Carson’s role in Great Again and the fact that his appointment means yet another thing I have predicted through the dark magic of theatre!

To be clear, I take no delight in my predictions coming true (I like to think of them as warnings, but now that they are actively happening, “prediction” is an equally accurate term).

In Great Again, a story which parallels a Trump Administration to the events of Thornton Wilder’s Our Town, Ben Carson serves as the Stage Manager, or for those who are unfamiliar with Our Town, the Narrator. He is also noted as the Director of Health and Human Services. If Carson were to get a position, this would have been the most logical.

In fact, Carson was offered this position but turned it down because he did not feel he was qualified to head up a government agency, something that apparently isn’t the job of a President. This was a fitting end to Carson’s legacy as a 2016 contender, had it actually been the end for Ben.

Ben Carson has been appointed to lead the department of Housing and Urban Development. Okay, fine. Of course he would have a position, but this one appointment meant that I somehow gave Donald Trump TOO MUCH CREDIT. I presumed that Donald Trump would give Ben Carson, the doctor, Health and Human Services. Instead, Donald Trump would appoint Ben Carson, the black guy, to Urban Development.

Did I somehow write a less-racist version of our President Elect? Did I somehow write A BRIGHTER version of our nation’s future? I’m afraid I’ve been forbidden from making predictions by those who love and care about me, so unfortunately these questions must go unanswered. Again, I apologize for the hell that I have wrought.

Kevin Cole
Playwright, Great Again

Support our writers on Patreon