Keri’s Corner

A Black and White Christmas

Christmas, at its base, is the celebration of an act of higher creative spiritual power that seeks to unite us all in a miraculously beneficial possibility. It’s a classic of the medieval past that we look upon with nostalgia, here in the twentieth century

The classics of the more recent past – black and white movies – for me, are represented by an 80s Saskatchewan TV station. On Sunday afternoons, it aired great black and white classics like The Beast of 20,000 Fathoms or It Came from Outer Space or The Day the Earth Stood Still.

In conjunction with this were the stars of these movies. I was particularly fond of James Stewart. A principle point of Jimmy’s work is his movies with Frank Capra as director: You Can’t Take it With You, Mr. Smith Goes To Washington, and It’s a Wonderful Life. Christmas is the most common association with It’s a Wonderful Life, since the story happens during Christmas, and it runs on TV during the Christmas season like the Grinch, or Charlie Brown and Linus. Jimmy Stewart fighting for Bedford Falls is as essential as the ballad for the dignity of a mutant reindeer.

It’s a Wonderful Life was released post-WWII in the later 1940s, just prior to the Red Scare when America turned dark and inward. Black and white film came up with noir, a way of seeing in film a darker world that was always there. Capra gives us a story of a decent, hard-working guy finally driven far enough to think about ending it all.

What does heaven see fit to send to the aid of poor, desperate George Bailey? A glorious, young Charlton Heston who will part the Red Sea straight to the bank and dump old man Potter out of his wheelchair? Hell no. George gets some poor doddering old fart ordering 17th century drinks. Why? George needs to hold the hand of someone else to keep his head above water. As much as he’s begged God to free him to roam the world, people look up to him and need him in Bedford Falls, regardless if he has not a clue as to why that may be.

It’s a Wonderful Life was stuck without copyright control in the mists of television history so everyone had easy, free holiday programming and generational audiences beyond whatever could have been dreamt of by Mr. Capra. God ended up liking that movie. There’s a universal benefit to making sure George Bailey gets back to his family and that angels get their wings.

Reinhardt lives in Boyle Street with his wife Keri Breckenridge and will be a guest columnist for a few issues.

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Neighbourhood Views

  • Rink Almost Ready – The McCauley Community Rink after being flooded at night. For a sched- ule of rink programs and skating times, see page seven. Dan Glugosh

  • Showing Off Their Martial Arts Moves – Troy Taylor and a student demonstrate a move at the Family Martial Arts Class that meets on Mondays at the Boyle Street Plaza from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Maria Castle

  • Friendship Garden Cleaned Up – The Friendship Garden in the northeast corner of Caboto Park was raked, weed- ed, and cleaned up in October by community members, organized by the McCau- ley Community League. At then end of November, the MCL will be partnering with the Boys and Girls club to decorate the garden for the winter holidays. Krista Mitton

  • Christmas Under Way in Churchill Square – The huge Christmas Tree in Churchill Square was lit up on November 14 during the Christmas on the Square Holiday Light Up organized by the Downtown Busi- ness Association. The tree is 72 feet tall and is decorated with 14,000 LED lights. The event also featured a spectacular fireworks display. Paula E. Kirman

  • Card Buffet: Fun With No Calories – The Card Making Buffet at the BSCL was a great success! Students made a variety of Christmas cards in this three-hour class, led by community member Kim Lowen. Maria Castle

  • Halloween Warmer – Families enjoying the first ever Halloween Warmer in McCauley on October 31. Organized by the McCauley Community League, the Warmer featured a bonfire, hot chocolate, and marshmallows. Krista Mitton

  • Christmas Under Way in Churchill Square 2 – The huge Christmas Tree in Churchill Square was lit up on November 14 during the Christmas on the Square Holiday Light Up organized by the Downtown Busi- ness Association. The tree is 72 feet tall and is decorated with 14,000 LED lights. The event also featured a spectacular fireworks display. Paula E. Kirman

  • Dancing with Colour and Flourish – Salvadoran dance group Raices Salvadorenas in performance at Mamenche’s Restaurant in November. Paula E. Kirman

  • Chanukah Candles – The festival of Chanukah, celebrated by Jewish people, begins this year at sundown on December 6 and ends at sundown on December 14. A candle is lit on each night of Chanukah on a candelabra called a menorah, until all nine candles are lit on the final night. The candles are lit with a middle candle, called a shammash. Paula E. Kirman

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We are always looking for new writers and photographers, as well as ideas for future stories. We also regularly need block carriers to help with the delivery and distribution of the paper. Email Paula with your submissions, feedback, ideas, and availability. We also ask that contributors read our Editorial Guidelines and that all volunteers read and agree to our Code of Conduct.

Upcoming Themes

Our February 2018 theme is “Sights and Sounds.” What do you like to look at in the area (local public art and murals? Community gardens?)? What sounds move you? Music from local festivals? Nearby venues? Deadline: January 12, 2018 Articles should be no longer than 500 words and accompanied by photos whenever possible. Send your work to: editor@bmcnews.org.