Worst Ever Nativity ScenesPosted: December 20, 2010
My online nemesis, Father Scott Gunn (think Spy vs. Spy), recently slapped me in the face with a glove — virtually speaking — making me morally obligated to respond to his slight. Our e-duels are well-known throughout cyberspace and quickly draw a crowd like two seventh graders beating the snot out of one another during recess. Some of you may remember the infamous Jelly Bean War that was waged during Eastertide 2010 AD. Well, yesterday, amid the joy of this holy season of anticipation, Father Gunn sucker punched me. And it will not go un-retaliated.
It all started with what I deemed the “Worst Advent ‘Devotional’ Ever” — a chocolate Advent garland that proclaimed the 12 Days of Christmas started on December 13th and counted down to Christmas Day rather than the starting on the 25th. Not being able to leave things well enough along, Father Gunn publicly mocked me in his blog as being utterly naive and posted links to several horrid Advent calendars including a diamond-encrusted calendar selling for $2.6 million and one targeted exclusively to dogs. I don’t begrudge this opinion — they are indeed shining examples of holiday excess, irreverence, and irrelevance.
But I would also contend that this doesn’t stop here. After scouring the globe, I present to you the Worst Ever Nativity Scenes:
The Life-Size Nativity Set is always popular because bigger is better. I’m pretty sure Jesus actually says as much somewhere in the Bible but I don’t like to show off my Scriptural knowledge by citing chapter and verse. Plus, without a giant nativity set, we’d never have what is one of my favorite cinematic scenes of all time: the drunk Kevin Bacon character in Diner punching out the Three Wise Men outside of a church in Baltimore. In his underwear.
Related to the Life-Size Nativity Set is the Blow-Up Nativity Set. This looks particularly classy on the front lawn of a church but anywhere in suburbia will do. And anyway, I’m sure the baby Jesus is a lot more comfortable on the yuletide blow-up mattress than lying in a manger full of hay.
The Little People Nativity Set allows your children to play with the crèche while you avoid screaming such holiday cheer that sounds a lot like “Don’t touch that crèche, it was handmade in Italy!” And, since it’s made by Fisher-Price, it also allows you to do your part for what I like to call the Christmas Industrial Complex.
The Bear Nativity Set is wrong on so many levels. “The Word became black bear and dwelt among us?” It just wreaks havoc with the whole notion of the doctrine of Christology — Jesus as half man and half man-eater. Bizarre.
I’m not sure of the origin of this one, but I’ll call it the Bowling Ball Nativity set. Nine pin ball not included. But imagine how frustrating it would be to try to pick up a spare with a Magi-Shepherd split.
In light of the recent Goose Gate controversy, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to share this Goose Nativity Set. I can see it now. Instead of those “Jesus is the Reason for the Season” bumper stickers, prepare to confront “Rubber Ducky You’re the One” stickers on pickup trucks sporting mud flaps.
I must thank Father Gunn for raising the level of horrible Advent/Christmas traditions. And also for helping me use my precious free time less than a week before Christmas to pursuing such endeavors. His is a gift that just keeps on giving.