It’s that time of the year again. When thoughts turn to the dread VISA Card statement, office Christmas parties, and Uncle Creepy’s eggnog (what is that secret ingredient). As an antidote to these and other horrors, I’ve assembled a few of my favorite monsters. A Christmas card from where the wild things are to my fellow nervous breakdowners. Wishing you all a truly festive season.

The Northpark Mall Theater. The Color of Money. 1986. I was getting ready to move again. Just thirty miles north this time, and mom and dad had arranged for a couple of kids from the new school to take me to the movies. Dad knew one of their parents through work. A football player and a cheerleader … and me, the kid who built miniature set designs out of shoe boxes in drama class and recited lines from All the President’s Men at random and set her alarm clock so she could phone in the answer to the morning quiz on the oldies station – you know, the kind when they play a two-second clip and you have to guess what it is.