Here is a Christmas story that we’ve loved since we were children, and we now enjoy sharing with our children. Watching the original 1978 special, Christmas Eve on Sesame Street, has become a tradition in our home.
Bert and Ernie’s story, told by Mr. Hooper, is very similar to O. Henry’s famous story “Gift of the Magi,” first published in the New York Sunday World in 1905. The gifts in the original story are different, but the message is the same — the Biblical Magi (the “Three Wise Men” we visited earlier this month) are invoked by O. Henry:
The magi, as you know, were wise men – wonderfully wise men – who brought gifts to the new-born King of the Jews in the manger. They invented the art of giving Christmas presents. Being wise, their gifts were no doubt wise ones, possibly bearing the privilege of exchange in case of duplication. And here I have lamely related to you the uneventful chronicle of two foolish children in a flat who most unwisely sacrificed for each other the greatest treasures of their house. But in a last word to the wise of these days let it be said that of all who give gifts these two were the wisest. Of all who give and receive gifts, such as they are wisest. Everywhere they are wisest. They are the Magi.
Our little ones are pretty wise themselves. Once again, when asked what they’re looking forward to this holiday, it’s spending the day together as a family first and all the presents second. We couldn’t be more proud of them.
Your friendly neighborhood record shop will be open its regular hours today (11am to 7pm) and short hours tomorrow (11am-3pm). And we know a lot of our regular friends have gift certificates under the tree, so we’ll see ya this weekend!