Monday, December 17, 2007

Christmas in Hollis

I realized the other day that the holidays are not coming, but they are here.

This may not be news to most people, who have already sent out their holiday cards, done their shopping and decorated the house. But it is news to me. See, I’m that person who refuses to believe that the holidays are here until one of two things happen. I hear Run DMC’s “Christmas in Hollis” on the radio or the local networks start playing “Shaka Zulu.” Well, imagine my surprise when I turned on the radio the other day and heard Rev. Run rapping about chicken and collard greens. (Side note: One day during the holidays, I’m going to go up to New York’s Hollis Avenue and eat chicken and collard greens, just to make things interesting. Anybody with me?).

Most people consider films like “It’s A Wonderful Life,” “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer” and “A Christmas Story” as true holiday flicks. But growing up, my holiday movie was “Shaka Zulu.” (And I’m talking about the original, not the remake with Grace Jones) Every December, the local networks would air the gazillion part miniseries detailing the life of the Zulu chief. I watched every year, even though I didn’t understand what was happening and the Witch Doctor gave me severe nightmares. It wasn’t until much later that I understood everything that was going on in this movie, from Shaka’s rise to power to his subsequent downfall. Unfortunately, the networks stopped airing it years ago. I’m tempted to get it on DVD, just to reminisce about old times. RIP to Henry Cele, who gave an amazing performance as Shaka.

Anyway, I decided to bust out with the holiday decorations the other night. This is a big deal for me, since I haven’t decorated in years. Back in the day, I used to distribute Christmas cards, trim my little fake Charlie Brown Christmas tree and have a miniature tree at my desk at work. But that was before I added my cat, Simba, into my life. He was so hyper that I was reluctant to put up anything that he might destroy. He has mellowed out in his old age, so I figured I’d bring the Christmas spirit into my home.

The decorations took me all of five minutes. Do you know what they consist of? My black Santa Claus, that gyrates his hips to “Jingle Bell Rock,” and an 18-inch faux tree that sits near my coffee table. Awwww yeah.
I guess phase 2 of ringing in the holidays would be to buy some gifts and Christmas cards. Hmmm. Maybe I’ll wait to do all that when they start airing “Shaka Zulu” again. Hah!

Merry Christmahanukwanzakah everybody!


Tha L said...

and a happy holiday to you, sis. I'm almost ashamed to say I don't know nuthin'bout Shaka Zulu...I'm all about Kunta Kinte baby! but although i haven't celebrated, decorated, or even acknowledged christmas in many years, the one thing i ALWAYS watch, no matter what, is Charlie Brown Christmas. hypocrite that I am, I absolutely love that shit.

Strength/Courage/Wisdom said...

Thanks chica!

I love the Charlie Brown movie too. Yeah, the Shaka movie is pretty obscure for most folks. I ain't mad!

Camille said...

I haven't seen that Shaka movie, either, but I see I need to check it out! And I love me some Charlie Brown Christmas. :)

eclat said...

Chicken and collard greens in New York City = Amy Ruth's in Harlem. (Sorry Hollis, Queens...)

Ebonne said...

I love christmas music....even though recently its gotten kinda out of control in the hip hop world. Christmas in Hollis by Run DMC is a classic but have you heard the Ludracris christmas song "ludacrismas?" Its the worst... I really feel hip hop artist should leave the holiday thing alone

Tasha Stewart said...

Happy holiday, MD! I must confess, the image of the black Santa gyrating to "Jingle Bell Rock" literally made me laugh out loud!