Absurd to the third power

Diane and I are getting used to the idea of the empty nest, as our kids, a senior and a sophomore, spend more and more time away from home.
So last night we were sitting in the living room clicking through the channels and came upon a little-known TV show called “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.”
It struck me how much weirdness on top of weirdness that show represents.
After all, you start with a legend about Santa and flying reindeer, which is weird enough, then you add a song about a reindeer whose red nose lights up the sky so Santa can pull his sleigh.
Then, for even more weirdness, add an abominable snow monster, a prospector, a talking snowman narrator, an elf dentist, a Charlie-in-the-Box, an Oz-like Lion king — and bring them all to life with low-tech stop-motion animation.
And the end result of all this imagination gone haywire?
One of the most popular programs in the history of television.
And then we watched “Purple Rain” — a whole ‘nother set of problems.
I need a new stack of good books.


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