Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Pound for pound, this still out-weirds even the "Star Wars Holiday Special"--even the Bea Arthur parts

First, there must have been a pitch meeting where somebody said, "We'll take Bing Crosby and have him spend Christmas by himself in an English castle."

One imagines baffled silence around the conference table. Perhaps an executive asks, "Is he trying to solve a mystery?"

No, someone assures the executive. He's just singing songs. You know -- Christmas songs.

"But . . . in a castle?" the executive repeats for clarification.

Another long silence. Palpable silence. The executive's next question doesn't need to be asked: That's it?

Finally, someone blurts, "We could have guest stars drop by the castle and sing duets with Crosby!" Around the table, a dozen underlings hold their breath.

The executive leans forward and taps the table thoughtfully. A dozen leather portfolios open, and the barrels of a dozen Cross pens are twisted to bring a dozen ball-points into writing position.

"Yes, yes," says the executive, his excitement growing by the moment. "And one of them can be a British androgyne rock star whose work Crosby has obviously never heard of!"

Around the table, a dozen Cross pens freeze in mid-stroke.

History records that the show was produced, although it did not become the beloved holiday classic everyone around that table must have hoped for. Still, that meeting, the executive, and those pens and portfolios all live on in this one immortal clip:

Castle, schmastle. At the end of the day, it's all about two crooners ad libbing some banter and sharing a moment, right?

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