Hip and Thigh: Smiting Theological Philistines with a Great Slaughter. Judges 15:8

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Good ole Nativity Scenes

Unlike my stricter, 10 commandment brethren, I happen to enjoy seeing a well done recreation of the life of Christ. I noted this about Passion Plays earlier this year during the Easter season. I am equally delighted with Nativity scenes.

I loved setting up our Nativity scene when I was a kid. First, we had to climb up into the attic and haul down all the Christmas stuff without killing ourselves by falling through the ceiling. Then my dad had to separate all the tree limbs for our fake tree and my brother and I would hover over his shoulder while he fidgeted and wrestled to get the tree together. After we put on the lights, ornaments, and garland, my mother would arrange our tree skirt and then I set up the Nativity scene.

It was a small little wooden barn with plastic figures, including an angel that was suppose to hover over the barn, but the slanted roof prevented Gabriel from properly balancing over the baby Jesus. One little bump would cause him to slide down the side of the barn and under a chair. Usually, I would put him up on the window sill. I would arrange Joseph and Mary on each side of the baby Jesus. Then the "lowing" cow behind Joseph and the donkey behind Mary. The shepherds were to one side of the barn, just outside on the carpet, as were the three wisemen on the other, with the one plastic camel right behind them.

The one thing I liked about our Nativity scene was the fact our baby Jesus actually looked like a newborn baby. I appreciated the attempt at some realism. However, this past week as I was walking through my mother's church, I noticed that some "size and image" problems with the characters in the Nativity scenes. For example, take a look at the baby Jesus:

The baby Jesus in these pictures appears to be nearly 3 years old. He has a full head of curly dark hair cut in a shaggy, 70s era style that would make Shawn Cassidy and Willie Aames envious. Also, the baby Jesus is just a wee bit too big for his manager. One false turn and he will go tumbling on to the straw strewn floor of the barn. And what is with the large, flowing sheet strategically covering him? A kid could strangle himself or suffocate.

Moving along, the baby Jesus in the Nativity scene down the hall was also interesting,

First off, he has shorter hair, which is good, but I do not believe baby Jesus wore silk boxers that holy night. Moreover, why is this baby Jesus wearing make-up and lipstick? He looks like either a Campbell's soup kid, or the younger brother/sister of that Davey boy from "Davey and Goliath."

A couple of other things I learned from these Nativity scenes:

Samuel L. Jackson was present at the first Nativity:

As were the Viking Norsemen:



Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am a direct descendant of the Norsemen who were present in Bethlehem that night. "Frankinscence" is actually an erroneous translation of "pickled herring." Believe it.

1:39 PM, December 21, 2006  
Blogger thomas4881 said...

I hear their is a Christmas movie presenting Jesus as a black man. Interestingly their is a big deal about those nativity Jesus figures looking like Enlish men.


2:58 PM, December 21, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You forgot to mention the oversized raised hands and arms. At least this baby Jesus does not have the secret hand sign that can be found on most of the statues, stain glass, and pictures in Europe (especially Italy) nor does he look like a miniature adult.

3:14 PM, December 21, 2006  
Blogger thomas4881 said...

fredsgal oh yeah? You mean where the baby is making that "O" symbol. Could be the illuminati calvinist communikatin..hmmm!

4:51 PM, December 21, 2006  
Blogger thomas4881 said...

I'm just being silly!

2:24 PM, December 22, 2006  

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