"A Christmas Story" 2012

Christmas, children, is not a date. It is a state of mind. ~Mary Ellen Chase

Panda Palace Here We Come 12/25/2012

A Christmas Story is a 1983 American Christmas comedy film based on the short stories and semi-fictional anecdotes of author and raconteur Jean Shepherd, based on his book In God We Trust, All Others Pay Cash, with some elements derived from Wanda Hickey's Night of Golden Memories.

Today we had Marcia & Leon Brander, Jan & Brian Finch, Donna & Bob Zaitz and Cyndy Harrington, Bill & Ellen Walter, Herbie Silverstein, Carri Fox, Greg Leach and us.... Great day for a movie!

Frank, the owner of Panda Palace , hosts us and our family and friends every year for a rolicking great time.

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Click for the full 1800 x 2400 px image

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
In 2012, the film was selected for preservation in the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress for being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
The first to arrive... Testing out the TV

Quotation To Remember:"In the heat of battle my father wove a tapestry of obscenities that as far as we know is still hanging in space over Lake Michigan."

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
All the way from Anaheim Hills....

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012 Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012 Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012

Did You Know? - Was the Red Ryder BB gun a real gun?

Yes it was, although it didn't go by the name Ralphie uses in the film ("Official Red Ryder 200 shot carbine-action range-model air rifle"). It was called the Red Ryder BB Gun. It was first produced in 1938 and became wildly popular. The features Ralphie describes, "a compass in the stock and this thing which tells time" were not features of the original model.

Since the Red Ryder wasn't produced until 1938 and the film takes place in 1939 or 1940, Mr Parker (Darren McGavin)'s claim that he had one when he was eight years old is impossible, although the Old Man could have had an entirely different BB rifle that was available when he was a kid.

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
No Brian, they are not Chinese French Fries!

Did You Know? - They are Fried crunchy wonton noodles - deep-fried strips of wonton wrappers, served as an appetizer with duck sauce and hot mustard at American Chinese restaurants.

A wonton (also spelled wantan, wanton, or wuntun in transcription from Cantonese; Mandarin: húndùn [xwə̌n.dwə̌n]) is a type of dumpling commonly found in a number of Chinese cuisines.

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Donna and Marcia light up the crowd

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Donna and Marcia light up the crowd even in black and white

Paul Strikes Again With The Annual "Carri Gets The Giggles"


All Paul did was remind Carri of the new wine for her age group and.....

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Someone gots the giggles.... She can't stop

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
She is up to .99 Laugh (A new measurement unit soon to be defined)

Did You Know? - Laughing is a reaction to certain stimuli. It may ensue from hearing a joke, being tickled, or other stimuli. Most commonly, it is considered a visual expression of a number of positive emotional states, such as joy, mirth, happiness, relief, etc.

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
The pressure is reaching the emergency levels.... Stand by for an alert...

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Every time she looks at Paul another eruption of laughing begins....

Did You Know? - Neurophysiology indicates that laughter is linked with the activation of the ventromedial prefrontal cortex, that produces endorphins. Scientists have shown that parts of the limbic system are involved in laughter. This system is involved in emotions and helps us with functions necessary for humans' survival. The structures in the limbic system that are involved in laughter: the hippocampus and the amygdala.

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
OK... All is safe.... Returning to "Normal"

Meanwhile The Movie Is Underway High Upon The Wall

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Notice the "duck" is resting for his major part in todays activities

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
The class gets an assignment....

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Brian got into the Chinese Hot Sauce....

Did You Know? - La jiao You or hong you (辣椒油, 红油), chili oil or red oil, is another distinctive Sichuan flavoring found mainly in cold dishes, as well as a few hot dishes. Chili oil is made by pouring hot oil onto a bowl of dried chilis, to which some Sichuan pepper is usually added.

After steeping in hot oil for at least a few hours, the oil takes on the taste and fragrance of chili. The finer the chili is ground, the stronger the flavor (regional preferences vary - ground chili is usually used in western China, while whole dried chili is more common in northern China.)

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Oh oh... Looks like Ralphie is doing something??

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Just a BB gun please


$2.95???? Wow... How times have changed


Lucky Ralphie was not wanting his BB gun 60 years later

Did You Know? - The film is set in Hohman, Indiana, a fictionalized version of Shepherd's hometown of Hammond, Indiana. Nine-year-old Ralph "Ralphie" Parker (Peter Billingsley) wants only one thing for Christmas: a Red Ryder BB Gun with a compass in the stock, and "this thing which tells time" (a sundial). While using various schemes to convince his parents to get him this gift, he continually bumps into objections from others saying, "You'll shoot your eye out."

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Father Christmas joined us this fine afternoon

The F-Bomb Gets Dropped While Helping Dad Change A Flat Tire

Ralphie drops an F-bomb in front of his father.

Ralphie: Oh FFFFFFUUUUUUDDDDDGGGEEEE...

Ralphie as Adult: [narrating] Only I didn't say fudge. It was the word! The big one! The queen mother of dirty words! The "F dash dash dash" word!

The Old Man: What did you say?

Ralphie: [mutters incoherently]

The Old Man: That's what I thought you said...

Ralphie as Adult: It was all over... I was dead. What would it be? The guillotine? Hanging? The chair? The rack? The Chinese water torture? Huh. Mere child's play compared to what surely awaited me.

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
This is what happens when you change tires

Quotation To Remember: "Over the years I got to be quite a connoisseur of soap. Though my personal preference was for Lux, I found that Palmolive had a nice, piquant after-dinner flavor - heavy, but with a touch of mellow smoothness. Lifebuoy, on the other hand... (Yechh!)"

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Bill! Did you ever get soap in your mouth??
The answer... "You bet... Ivory, Irish Spring, and several others"

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Red soap??

The Girls Do Not Know About Soap!

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Donna and Cyndy take in the movie

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012 Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
"Now that there is funny!!"

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Even casual diners were surprised and pleased with all the activities

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
OMG... Paul was indeed here... Notice, closest to the bar!

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Love is in the air

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
A simple reach and voilà, paydirt... Or is it paywine??

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Paul stops to movie to 'splain how the tounge was done

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012

Did You Know? - How did they make Flick's tongue stick to the flagpole?

They cut a small hole on the flag pole and had a vacuum hose attached that would suck in Flick (Scott Schwartz)'s tongue. The hose trick worked so well that Scott was actually stuck to the pole until they would turn the hose off. Rumor has it that they actually played a prank on him one day on the set and left the hose on while they all went to lunch.

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012

The Food Arrived.... Time To Dive In!

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Panda Palace does Chinese very very well!

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Frank is working extra hard this evening

Did You Know? - American Chinese food typically treats vegetables as a side dish or garnish while cuisines of China emphasize vegetables. This can be seen in the use of carrots and tomatoes. Native Chinese cuisine makes frequent use of Asian leaf vegetables like bok choy and kai-lan and puts a greater emphasis on fresh meat and seafood.

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Sue assures everyone has goodies!

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Food disappears quickly - What Leon and Marcia.... No chopsticks??

Did You Know? - Chopsticks (singular: chopstick) are short, frequently tapered sticks used in pairs of equal length, which are used as the traditional eating utensils of China, Japan, Korea and Vietnam.

Originated in ancient China, they can also be found in some areas of Tibet and Nepal that are close to Han Chinese populations, as well as areas of Thailand, Laos and Burma which have significant Chinese populations; otherwise, the traditional method of eating is with hands, and more recently, Western cutlery.

Chopsticks are most commonly made of wood, bamboo or plastic, but are also made of metal, bone and ivory. Chopsticks are held in the dominant hand, between the thumb and fingers, and used to pick up pieces of food.

The English word "chopstick" may have derived from Chinese Pidgin English, a pidgin in which "chop chop" meant "quickly". According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the earliest published use of the word is in the 1699 book Voyages and descriptions by William Dampier: "[T]hey are called by the English seamen Chopsticks".

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Paul ate a bite and then watched the movie for the 99th time

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Yeah yeah... The gang's all here..
We miss Hans & Kirsten, Vicky & Del, Marianne & Craig, and Kathy& Ed

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
The food was first to go... Followed immediately by the wine

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Serious conversations underway....

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
The food keeps coming

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
All eyes were glued on the TV

The Duck.... He Is Smiling

Quotation To Remember: "[After the Christmas turkey is stolen by the neighbors' dogs] The heavenly aroma still hung in the house. But it was gone, all gone! No turkey! No turkey sandwiches! No turkey salad! No turkey gravy! Turkey Hash! Turkey a la King! Or gallons of turkey soup! Gone, ALL GONE!"

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012

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Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Frank delivers the "Guest Of Honor"

Quotation To Remember: "It's a beautiful duck. It really is. But you see..... it's.... smiling at me."

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
"I'll take a whack at it"

Did You Know? - Oeking Duck - Fattened ducks are slaughtered, plucked, eviscerated and rinsed thoroughly with water. Air is pumped under the skin through the neck cavity to separate the skin from the fat. The duck is then soaked in boiling water for a short while before it is hung up to dry.

While it is hung, the duck is glazed with a layer of maltose syrup, and the inside is rinsed once more with water. Having been left to stand for 24 hours, the duck is roasted in an oven until it turns shiny brown.

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Herbie demonstrates the "Kosher Chop"

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
We all sing "Deck the Halls With Barrs Of Haa Ree"

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
The head is now removed... Dinner can proceed!

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Everyone participates! See you next year!!

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Bill takes a whack at the duck!!

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Marcia contributes to the end of the duck... With a cheese knife???

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Sue gots the giggles..... Gregor is about to fal off his chair

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
The poor old duck makes it around the table

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Brian gives him a good squeeze

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Notice the wine begin to disappear....

Oh No... Time To Go Home???

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Marcia tells us of seeing the first toothpick machine when it was invented

Did You Know? - The first toothpick-manufacturing machine was developed in 1869, by Charles Forster. Another was patented in 1872, by Silas Noble and J. P. Cooley.

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Donna ponders the need for dessert.... while recalling the movie

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
The leg tell all

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Bob said the magic word and the duck came out of the ceiling with $100 .... Bob remembers

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012

Did You Know? - The author William Peter Blatty once won $10,000 on this show. When Groucho Marx asked what he planned to do with the money, he said he planned to take some time off to "work on a novel". The result was The Exorcist.



Did You Know? - Usually a prop duck came down on a cable with the prize money when the secret word was spoken. On one occasion however, Groucho Marx's brother, Harpo Marx, came down instead.

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Bob and Donna just adopted Gregor

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Bill will have visions all night long

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Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
Leon places his last drink order....

Christmas Story on Christmas Day 2012
See you next year