It began with a memo sent last year by my father to the five members of our family. During our Christmas celebration in Dallas, it was announced, we would make a family video tape with his office colleague doing the filming. We were instructed to prepare a short biographical presentation. We assembled, a little apprehensive, but curious as to what we would produce.
"We are gathered here so that after 30 years, some of us will be able to see how we looked and talked and remember the good old days when we were all in good shape," began my father, sounding a bit like a combination of Walter Cronkite and the host of "This Is Your Life."
My mother entered, stage left, wearing a big black portrait hat that she wore on the way to their honeymoon in 1952. She spoke about growing up in Europe, about moving to the United States and about deceased members of her family with such emotion that she--and the rest of us--had to brush away a few tears.
My sister did part of her presentation in German, since she had just spent a year there studying. I talked about what I remembered of our childhood and about my current life in Washington. My brother, the youngest in the family, took a cue from "Saturday Night Live" and presented a comedy routine in which he used a large drawing board to draw caricatures--accompanied by his own commentary--of everyone in the family.
In the final segment, we gathered together, cracked a few jokes and signed off. Then we rewound the tape and watched "our movie." We were enthralled.
We're planning Part II of the "Koncius Family Holiday Special" next week. We think we've got "Frosty the Snowman," Perry Como or the King Family specials beat.