When I was a kid the original "Miracle on 34th Street" was my favorite Christmas movie.  Then on December 1, 1989 National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation was released in theaters and my whole world changed. Actually, it changed in a couple of great ways.

A couple weeks after the John Hughes classic was released I asked out this cute cashier from the grocery store I worked at. We went on our first date and saw National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. We watched the movie, laughed a lot, ate popcorn....she grabbed my arm when the squirrel came jumping out of the Christmas tree and after the movie we drove around for hours looking at Christmas lights, talking and sipping hot chocolate.....and that night I realized two things. National Lampoon't Christmas Vacation was the best holiday movie I'd ever seen and this first date was going to turn into something really special for the rest of my life.

About four years later, she become my wife.

Since that first date my wife and I have watched National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation every December 19th. We drive around looking at Christmas lights, talking and sipping hot chocolate. Once we had kids, they joined us too and they actually look forward to it every year.

So, now it's 30 years later. The movie is an even bigger holiday classic than it's ever been and this December 19th, my wife and I will celebrate the 30th anniversary of our first date.

This year we'll have to opportunity to see this holiday classic on the big screen again for the first time in almost 3 decades. Regal Cinema is playing it several time this holiday season as well as a few other holiday classics. Also, The Palace is showing National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation on December 19th....a coincidence? I think not.

Now go have the hap, hap, happiest Christmas since Bing Crosby tap-danced with Danny f***ing Kaye....I know I will.

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