Archive for the ‘Christmas stories’ Category

Christmas Stories – 15 Years Worth

April 23, 2017

Musea Annual Christmas Stories
Musea has an annual tradition – a Christmas story for the December issue. Did you miss any of them?

There is a lot I like to put into each short story, and not much room to squeeze it into -only 8 pages per Musea issue, with the front page being a photo! That means everything has to happen in 7 pages.

I try to write, so that each story first HAS a story, a good plot. Then some interesting characters caught up in something challenging, some connection to Christmas, and finally a deeper meaning behind the top story. Maybe even a couple of layers of meaning. Hopefully the stories take you somewhere, that you feel better about visiting.

Here is a summary of the last 15 years worth. Enjoy. – Tom.
DOWNTOWN WITH THE BOOK OF RENOWN (novel) – Brad and Tom find a Treasure. 2014
HAUNTED WITH JOY – Kids follow a set of treasure maps to find …. 2013
STATIC – Antique radio leads to a murder scene.
LEO MARS, DETECTIVE – Leo Mars tries to solve a suicide case 2011
SENLIN – Story of the greatest dancer that ever lived.
CANDLE AND ICICLE – Children wish away a death in the family. 2009
CHESS SETS – A new idea for a toy
HOUSE KEY – A husband hides his wife’s gift in a …
BROTHER JOHN – A monk learns about giving and joy.
HEAD UP PENNY – A little ghost returns home
MR WEEBLERS ENCOUNTER – Santa, real or fake
ALIENS – Aliens land and enjoy Christmas on Earth
DOT’S PLAYHOUSE – A father builds the ultimate doll house.
MAGIC BAG – A bum finds a magic bag that’s filled with presents. 2001
ANN – Ann breaks her foot while trying to do good, at the worst time of the year. 2000
RANGER 330 SUB ATOMIC BLASTER; toy gun is so easy for father to steal !?! [etc.]

(all at

Piccola (a Christmas Story – from the Musea Vaults)

December 24, 2015


(Musea version of a poem by Celia Thaxter.
Note it was the custom for St. Nick to leave a present in the child’s shoe. ) …

Poor Mother, poor Father, house maid and share cropper
and both pockets empty, except for due bills.
What can they get their little girl for Christmas.
“Piccola! Piccola! Love of my life!”

Father wrings hands and mother cries.
The bells ring carols as the family walks to church.
A snowflake falls on Piccola’s nose.
The sky turns from grey to deepest pure blue
As they enter the nave with the other parishioners.

All three singing from hard wood pews.
Piccola’s mouth makes a big “O” on her vowels.
But her mind’s trying to see, not the notes, but the future – Trying to see what would fill up her shoe,
Trying to see by one dim candle.

Parents in whispers, decide it’s best
To tell her her present is not here yet,
Not denied, it’s only delayed …
And drop into slumber as they pray
‘Perhaps by January and Jesus’ grace …

Morning Sun peeps through the fluttering shades,
The window cracked open gets abundant free air.
Piccola’s eyes widen as she remembers,
And before the cock crows tumbles to her shoe.
And their shivering, a refugee from the cold.
A tiny beige and half asleep sparrow.

Picolla feeds it – they have crumbs a plenty,
And bounds to her parents, “Look what St. Nicholas left me!
It’s the best gift a girl could get”
I’ve decided to christen it Picollete
And all eyes glisten with tears of joy.

Haunted With Joy (Annual Xmas Issue of Musea)

November 30, 2014

Dear Readers,

the Xmas Issue of Musea is out and about at all the regular places, including mailboxes, stores, and online.
Webmaster Matthew has added a little website Christmas fun, so start at the front page here:

Then click on through to the other side and read #194 Haunted With Joy, the twins have to find a treasure, and they don’t even know what the treasure is! Here is an excerpt:

Happy Holidays Musea Readers! ! This issue is our annual Musea Christmas Story. Take a rest from your busy schedule and find out what a series of treasure maps leads to. I wish you all a great Christmas season and an even better New Year in 2015.
See you then – Tom

Photo 1
1 – The First Step

Betsy: (leaning on the padded arm of her dad’s easy chair) I’m bored…. so is Ronny. What can we do?
Dad: How can you be bored? We just moved into this gigantic Victorian Mansion (as he sweeps the back of his hand from left to right) filled with empty rooms. We’re in a new town, new neighborhood, with new people everywhere. How can you two be bored?
Betsy: Don’t know…
Ronny: (joining his twin sister) … But we are!
Dad: Well I’m not. I’ve got writing to do, accounts to settle, contracts to sign, reading galore, and all that has to wait when any of the tradesman come, or the moving van gets here…. Have you asked your mom if she has something for you to do?
Ronny: She’s next.
Dad: Got any good books to read?
Betsy: We’ve finished all our mysteries. Do you think there’s a library nearby?
Dad: Mission one – find out!
Betsy: How?
Dad: Find out!
Betsy Oh bother! (the twins headed for the kitchen).
The Watkins family had struck it rich….

Tom Hendricks
(editor of the 22 year old zine Musea)

ZINE, Named one of the best ZINES by UTNE magazine. Featured on ROCKETBOOM)
MUSIC, 9 full CD’s of Postmod Music at the CDBaby store.
BLOG for Musea, Art Contests, Weekly E-mail Messages)

YOUTUBE CHANNEL, features all my 60 videos)
BIG MUSIC LIST (200 Song – First Worldwide Best Music List)

Static – Musea’s Annual Christmas Story issue #190

November 4, 2013


The Christmas Issue of Musea #190, titled “Static” is out and about at the usual spots.* Fun cover photo “She had an aunt that had ‘powers'”
Dawn and her family are supposed to have a nice quiet Christmas with the family. A radio brings some STATIC and changes everything, and in doing so brings some real depth to the season.

* Look soon for it on the musea website.
OR you can send me your address (if in USA) and I’ll mail you a copy.

Tom Hendricks
(editor of the 21 year old zine Musea)
ZINE, Named one of the best ZINES by UTNE magazine. Featured on ROCKETBOOM)
MUSIC, 7 full CD’s of free Post-Bands Music)
BLOG for Musea, Art Contests, Weekly E-mail Messages)


Ten Company Men (a Christmas Play in crazy verse from the Musea Vaults)

December 18, 2012

Ten Company Men

What if…Santa Clause, an angel or the three ghosts that visited Scrooge visited the ten companies that advertise the most. And after one harrowing night, scared them into altruism; showed them a past, present, and future, so prophetic and so profound, that they, as they say, ‘saw the light.’ It might…go…something….like…this…

1. SEARS Stores $664.6 million

2. Chevrolet Cars and Trucks $656.3 million

3. McDonald’s Restaurants $580.5 million

4. Ford Cars and Trucks $569.9 million

5. Dodge Cars and Trucks $551.8 million

6. AT&T Telephone Services $475.9 million

7. Toyota Cars and Trucks $453.8 million

8. MCI Telephone Services $435.0 million

9. Burger King Restaurants $427.0 million

10. Circuit City Stores $400.1 million*
Figures from Advertising Age and for 1997.

Total spending yearly by all 10 = $5,214,900,000. At 9.6% interest, that’s $500,000,000 per year or $41,670,000 per month. (All numbers rounded).

First, the CEO of Sears & Roebuck would (with everyone around the shining oval meeting table in the polished swiveling red leather seats) call the meeting of the Big 10 to order and in his opening remarks say:
“Last year we spent $5,214,900,000 on ads.

(And that’s no bit of undigested beef!)

But this year (he paced) I wax in another direction.
I, like you, have been met by…
things from the unearthly world.
And they made it clear to me that, that I…
(the other 9 mumble their “yesses”and “for sures” and “we know the that’s a fact” and “I commiserate with that”)
that the money should be better spent!


“To the employees of the advertising agencies we say:
“…And the Union workhouses? Are they still in operation?
…The Treadmill and the Poor Law are in full vigor then?”
and they may retort:
“What shall we put you down for?”
“Nothing” we’ll quote.
“You wish to remain anonymous?”
“I wish to be – to be…I was always …we were always….
good men of business…Gentlemen!
MANKIND is our business this night!
(a bell twinkles)

“Now for the accountants to account our accounts.
Mr. Stewart of Stewart, Stewart & Capra:”
(an aside: “Are you Mr. Stewart?” “No, I’m Mr. Stewart!”)
Meanwhile, Ms. Reed, the secretary, comes in,
“Coffee anyone?” (before you begin)
“Yes, Virginia!” Cups filled to the brim.
“May I go now sir? It’s Christmas Eve.”
“Of course,” says the CEO, “But first a gift from me.”
(He opens a drawer and hands her a wrapped present.)
“And one for you.” says Miss Reed,
(pulling her gift from behind her back)
They unwrap. (the others watch)
And with delight both proclaim,
(Both in unison) “Oh how wonderful!”
“A set of combs!” “A platinum fob chain!”

“Thank you Ms. Reed and Merry Christmas!”
They all say goodnight, laughing “Ho ho ho!”
(One with a thumb to the side of his nose.)
And one with this caution on his voice:
“Don’t let the calls
that call this folly
call la la la la la,
la la la la.

“Now,” says the accountant
(the night is silent and all are showing interest…)
“What if we take the 5 bill, 214 point 9 mil
And put it into a bank, stock, or bond;
(Nothing we’re bound to, but something to ac-crue…’)
Chalk in hand he does the math:
“…with 9 point 6 percent per year gain…”
chalk, chalk, chalk
“…each month brings back this much in…”
chalk, chalk, chalk
“…rounded off to the nearest cent…”
chalk, chalk, chalk
“…500 million dollars – and the capital never spent!”

The 10 men all gasp – $50 million each!
[with bells on their footnotes – epistle mistletoes]
“What do we do with what has accrued…”
(asks AT&T and Burger King)
“…with the $500 million of interest?”
chalk, chalk, chalk
“41 point 67 mil a month
for this month for next month, for the months after that,
for now and forever… (and then? and then?)
“Hooray and away!” say 10 company men.

Mr. Sears:
We could give every man, woman and child in the U.S.
A 20-dollar bill each and every Christmas.
Mr. Chevrolet:
We could go into a new town each month and give away
the 41 point 67 mil and say
Fix your streets, feed your poor,
Buy bicycles, build houses or parks…
Mr. McDonald’s:
Have a party, do more…
Mr. Ford:
One month Tucson, then Boise, and St. Paul…
Mr. Dodge:
Vicksburg, Pittsburgh, Juneau and Sioux Falls…
Mr. AT&T:
And on and on it goes
Mr. Mr. Toyota:
Where it stops
Mr. Mr. MCI:
No one knows!
Mr. Burger King:
But wait! (the room hushes) Will this bring us good will?
Mr. Circuit City:
Good will toward men.
(altogether) “We spend.”
“Meeting adjourned!” The End


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