Four things I’m thankful for (among many) this holiday season:

  • Having seen the Matthew Weiner version of A Christmas Carol during its long run before it ended this month at the Actors Theater in Phoenix. It was reviving rather than treacly—and I can think of no higher accolade to give to what is usually a Christmas confection.

That was one of the points of Robrt Pela in his winsome farewell to the show, in his review of “A Christmas Carol” for KJZZ.

  • Getting to watch our daughter Willa—and a bunch of other great actors—through a successful run of a different play, also of the holiday variety, but through a seriously askew lens. The play is called American Pastorela: Show Us Your Papers.

Show Us Your Papers is the brainchild of playwright James E. Garcia. You can read a little about it here.

The show was produced by New Carpa Theater Company. Find more about them on the web. And remember to like them on Facebook.

New Carpa Theater (formerly Colores Actors-Writers Workshop) was founded in 2002 by Garcia. He wrote the play, a retelling of a traditional Mexican Nativity story, updating it every year with modern political and comedic elements. This year’s production had the devil (El Diablo) hell-bent on preventing the Hernandez family from making a trek from Mexico to Bethlehem to see God’s only begotten son. On the way, they met Russell Pearce, Janet Napolitano, Dennis Burke, Billy Mays, and many more.

Willa played a Devil’s Minion—excited beyond words to have the chance to work with Russell Pearce—who had been accidentally electrocuted in a bathtub in the opening scene.

The holiday laughs keep on coming. Trust me—it was funny, filled with laugh-out-loud moments. But it also aimed to make us a cringe a bit as we took a look at our state.

  • Great Arizona weather—however brief before the summer heat starts again in about a month. Enjoy this photo of an early-morning Camelback with its little cap of fog—our own Kilimanjaro-lite.

Happy holidays. Next week, I will be out of the office. But I’m still planning to be opinionated—though perhaps a little less verbose—so I’m sure I’ll share news from Arizona’s legal landscape.