Tales for Our Time-wise, we've been spending this December in and around New York, both with P G Wodehouse's Psmith, Journalist and with our brace of Damon Runyon capers - Three Wise Guys and Dancing Dan's Christmas. And in a certain sense this latest of our Yuletide yarns is also rooted in the Big Apple, as it came to me a couple of weeks ago when I was on the telly with Tucker and he brought up the subject of Rockefeller Center's unusually tatty Christmas tree.
Well, we played it for laughs on screen. But the forlorn symbolism of the thing stayed with me, so one morning I woke early and (as I do every other Christmas or so) I wrote it up as a short story, which tells the tale of a conniving governor and the strange choice for his capital city of a poor stunted misshapen Christmas tree. Mark Steyn Club members can hear Part One of The Little Christmas Tree by clicking here and logging-in. I would not presume to put it in the same pantheon as the Brothers Grimm or Hans Christian Andersen, but it is a seasonal variation thereof for the peculiar hellishness of 2020.
If you're not yet a member of The Mark Steyn Club, we've a veritable library of audio adventures waiting for you - by Conan Doyle, H G Wells, Conrad, Kipling, Scott Fitzgerald - and a lot of Christmas tales too, from Dickens to O Henry to L M Montgomery. You can find more information about the Club here - and, if you've a pal who'd appreciate these Tales for Our Time, check out our Gift Membership.
If you enjoy Episode One, please join us for Part Two of The Little Christmas Tree tomorrow evening, Wednesday, just ahead of my midweek appearance with Tucker.