Be My Guest
As we wrestled with some even-for-us astonishing traffic last night down south, I kept getting photos texted to me from church, where a bunch of kids were decorating Easter eggs (I handle the social media duties for this church and we use a ton of photos in our newsletter as well as on Instagram, although we’re a little careful with the kids).
They were still there when we finally straggled in, and one of these guys pointed at me and said, “It’s Mr. Harry Potter.” I’ve made this comment myself, with the new, rounder glasses, and this kid isn’t particularly neurotypical anyway, apt to making strange comments (I was the parent of one of these guys back in the day; this stuff rolls off my back, makes me smile). I was amused and agreed that I was rocking the Potter hard.
I looked in the mirror right afterward, actually, and got what I thought was a funny idea. So I went to several people just chatting in a hallway, my wife among them and a couple of young adults, and I began to describe this idea for a grown-up Harry Potter (I would play him in the movie. Me, or Kenneth Branagh).
I told them how this 60-year-old Harry Potter would have forgotten, probably by some spell, that he was ever a wizard, and he moved to America and became a hedge fund billionaire, living the high life, having divorced poor Ginny years before, only visiting London once a year to visit his aged aunt Minerva, who, of course, is really Professor McGonagall, played by Maggie Smith, of course...
All of these blank, polite looks. My wife wasn’t really picking up on it, and as for the rest of them? Turned out never to have seen Hook. I don’t know what I’m supposed to do when it comes to references. I thought I had a handle on it, but who doesn’t know Hook? I guess a lot of people. I just now explained it to John, and he didn’t pick up on it either.
Although if anyone is interested, I have some ideas.
Tonight is our Vigil, which is always tricky for me. On the one hand, I get to eat all those M&Ms. On the other, my oven is going on and staying on today, since I have to bake six dozen cookies and two loaves of bread. I don’t have to, but I always do and I’m not messing with tradition.
And at some point, I have to channel some French dude and rehearse my “Valley of the Dry Bones” (Ezekial 37:1-14) version of Be Our Guest. It’s my opinion, my personal belief, that eventually, probably sooner than later, every story ever told in human history will be made into a musical, probably by Disney. Including every story in the Bible.
Except this one. This is a very boring Bible story. Thus my Lumiere impression. I’ve done this twice before over the years, so tonight I’m livening things up by altering a few lines (there was a reference to Glee originally, for one thing, which doesn’t really work anymore) and adding in some more lyrics from the original to play with. My favorite so far:
Beef ragout, cheese soufflé
Pie and pudding, on flambé
But it's 5000 BC, you see
These don't exist today!
It’s so rare that I do any performing. I do public speaking, but it’s not the same thing. I emcee, I host, I announce. Occasionally I read. It’s not like pulling some accent out of the past (I’m thinking Charles Boyer is what it sounds like) and singing lyrics you wrote (mostly) yourself, like a fool. Been a while since I played the fool.
Wish me luck. Maybe I’ll pull off a recording. For posterity.