Sunday, December 31, 2017

Happy New Year 2018

The Space Alien and the entire staff of the Space Alien Gazette wish Loyal Readers good health and much happiness in 2018!  

The Space Alien will spend January 1, 2018 writing page upon page of New Year's resolutions, and resolves to be a kinder, more thoughtful and more generous Space Alien in the coming year.  
If you are having trouble thinking of good resolutions for 2018, the Space Alien recommends drawing inspiration from back issues of the Space Alien Gazette at www.spacealiengazette.com.

Your Editor wishes Loyal Readers good health and happiness in the coming year, and recommends enjoying the day with friends, family, or just relaxing and reading a good book! -- preferably one that offers new hope for the year ahead!


Saturday, December 23, 2017

The Space Alien Helps Santa

The Space Alien decided to pay a holiday visit to Santa. Traveling at tachyonic velocities exceeding the speed of light, the Space Alien reached the North Pole where Santa greeted the Space Alien warmly.



Santa was reviewing lists of who had been naughty and who had been nice, but clearly the jolly old elf was worried.  


"What's wrong, Santa?" asked he Space Alien kindly.  "Can I help?"


Santa sighed: "It's the Reindeer!  The other night they all flew to Chicago to dance with the Sugarplum Fairy in the Joffrey Ballet production of The Nutcracker at the historic but drafty Auditorium Theatre."



"They danced beautifully and they were the stars of the production, but they wore only their skimpy tutus and they all caught cold!"


The Space Alien peeked into the reindeer's bedroom and sure enough, there they were, Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, and even Blitzen!  All sick in bed!

"I don't know how we'll manage to bring gifts to all the little boys and girls this year," said Santa sadly. "These reindeer are just too sick to travel!"

The Space Alien thought deeply for a moment, then whipped out an iPhone, dialed several numbers, and had brief, urgent conversations.





In moments, Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer stood at the door, with the Little Engine that Could close behind.  

"We got your call and we're here to help!" said Rudolph.  "I can guide your sleigh tonight!" he continued, and then turned to the Little Engine that Could.  "Can you carry all those toys?

"I think I can, I think I can!" chugged the Little Engine that Could. 

"Then let's get going!" they all cried out together!   

The Space Alien made sure the reindeer were all tucked in with warm blankets and plenty of hot lemonade to drink, and then joined Santa, Rudolph and the Little Engine that Could as they loaded all the toys aboard.  

The Little Engine pulled. . 
The Space Alien pushed.
Rudolph lit their way through the night!
And a relieved and happy Santa prepared to jump down millions of chimneys, delivering toys to little girls and boys everywhere!
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P.S. The Space Alien reassures concerned Loyal Readers that the reindeer were soon feeling much better, and there were plenty of gifts for them too! 

P.P.S. For loyal readers wondering about the reindeer dancing en pointe wearing pink tutus, Your Editor would remind you that these reindeer are most likely female.    This is well documented here:  
https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2017/12/19/people-were-wrong-about-santas-reindeer-nova-scotia-zoologist-says-theyre-actually-all-female.html
Here are some extra goodies for good children of all ages:


Enjoy The Little Engine that Could by Wally Piper.
Find this 1930s classic from many booksellers!
Find a reprint of the original classic at Amazon here.

Listen to a reading on You Tube:

Here's a page-by-page reading of "The Little Engine that Could" complete with illustrations:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JdFm7eekQZY

And here's another reading by none other than Captain Kangaroo:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nK6fbnHccOg

Learn about A Visit from St. Nicholas, the classic poem nearly 200 years old, attributed to Clement Clark Moore, that has shaped so much of our popular conception of Santa Claus:   

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Visit_from_St._Nicholas and hear a reading with wonderful pictures at  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cEkZK9NZGFg
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The entire staff of the Space Alien Gazette wishes you and yours a wonderful holiday season and good health and lots of exciting adventures in 2018!

Saturday, December 9, 2017

The Space Alien's First Hanukkah

On a chilly winter morning the Space Alien was awakened by a ringing iPhone.
The calendar on the wall clearly showed the year as 165 BCE (Q.V.), but who could be calling?


Who could be calling? 
Why, it was the Space Alien's old friend Judah Maccabee!  Judah Maccabee sounded happy but exhausted, speaking excitedly about how he and his brothers had won a battle to return their house of worship and had just finished an enormous cleaning job there, and how, although there was hardly any oil left in the lamps, they had miraculously continued to burn for eight days.

Then Judah Maccabee invited the Space Alien to a party to celebrate Hanukkah, the rededication of this beautiful house of worship, as well as the miracle of the lights that had happened there.  (And you, loyal reader, may learn more about this here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hanukkah and here: https://www.myjewishlearning.com/article/the-maccabean-revolt/.)

Of course the Space Alien accepted with pleasure!  The Maccabee brothers always gave splendid parties that sometimes went on for days.  But this would be the very first Hanukkah party ever, and a gift was in order.  But what should it be?

The Space Alien knew that the Maccabees had fought a hard fight against those who would keep them from practicing their religion.  Now that their house of worship was restored, a beautiful candle holder would be the perfect gift.

The Space Alien scoured the markets and at last found a beautiful candle holder called a menorah to hold eight candles to be lit each night, with one more added each day for eight days to commemorate the miracle, plus a ninth holder for the candle used to light all the others.
The Space Alien Gives a Menorah to Judah Maccabee
Judah Maccabee welcomed the Space Alien warmly and, as seen in this exclusive photo taken by one of the Maccabee brothers, was thrilled to receive the beautiful menorah.

What a splendid party it was!   The Space Alien joined in all the songs, spun a top called a "dreidl," shared tiny chocolate coins wrapped in gold foil called "Hanukkah gelt" (or Hanukkah coins), and had a wonderful time!


The Space Alien Spins the Dreidl
The Space Alien Shares Hanukkah Gelt
This year Hanukkah begins the evening of Tuesday, December 12 when the first candle is lit.  The eighth candle is lit the evening of December 19.   


If you would like to learn more about Hanukkah songs, click here.
(If you would like to hear these songs, there are many performances of them at https://www.youtube.com  Just enter the name of the song you would like to hear, or just enter "Hanukkah songs" and you will get lots of choices!) 
If you would like to learn to play a game with a little top called a "dreidl,' click here.  
If you would like to learn about Hanukkah "gelt" (or Hanukkah money), click here.

Loyal readers may enjoy another Hanukkah story at:
http://spacealiengazette.blogspot.com/2016/12/the-space-alien-hanukkah-visitor.html

The Space Alien Gazette wishes all loyal readers a joyous and light-filled Hanukkah!

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