Charles Phoenix's Retro Holiday Slideshow Inspired Us to Play With Our Food

Categories: art

Jena Ardell
You can spot fans of Charles Phoenix from 100 yards away: the man wearing a leopard Santa hat paired with a bolo tie; the trio of women wearing homemade holiday hats atop victory curls; the rockabilly couple who traveled more than 60 miles to attend Phoenix's holiday slideshow. These were some of the characters who packed the Art Theatre in Long Beach on Saturday to indulge in more than two hours of comedy and vintage photos.

Those who personally know Phoenix will tell you his onstage persona is only a slightly more exaggerated version of himself. His enthusiasm for kitschy discoveries and the boisterous expressions that emerge from his mouth are as authentic as his inexhaustible collection of Kodachrome slides . . . "I KNOW!"

Jena Ardell
The most entertaining thing you can do is bring along someone who knows nothing about Phoenix (if that is at all possible since he has become a reoccurring guest on shows such as The Martha Stewart Show, Conan and The Queen Latifah Show) and let your guest think he or she is merely about to watch a humdrum holiday-themed slideshow. If your guest isn't bursting into fits of laughter or contemplating how to insert Christmas lights inside a giant Jell-O mold by the end of the show, consider finding a new friend.

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