Hey Becca, yippee-ki-yay.

Hello Rebecca,

You're probably wondering why I am referring to you so formally. This is why: you have done something embarrassing. Not like that one time, or that other time, but what you said last night. I'm finding it difficult to just joke around with you at the holidays over this one. Your faux pas. A big, big one. Remember?

I was sitting on the couch. You were next to me. I was talking to my brother. One of them, or a couple. The topic of Christmas films came up, and Jonny and I expressed great surprise at learning that our brother Jeremy saw Die Hard last year for THE FIRST TIME. Mind blown. How did he grow up in our family and go over twenty years without seeing one of the Top Five Adult Christmas Films of All Time?

Of course this got me to thinking about the last time I watched Die Hard with you, and I simply could not remember. Sad. Which then made me question whether I EVER have seen it with you. Which then made me question whether YOU have ever actually seen it. So I asked you. I will repeat my question below for emphasis:

"Wait...you HAVE seen Die Hard...right? Right?!"

This is where we get to your troubling and frankly, really, really embarrassing response. And it wasn't just WHAT you said. It's HOW you said. Nonchalant, cool kid film geek no hesitation, you said:

"Oh yeah, Die Hard, of course. Isn't that the movie with the tall building where some stuff happens?"

On a technical level, yes. Sure. But imagine if someone described Michael Jordan as being "...that guy with the bald head who plays sports."

Or Mother Teresa as "...that elderly woman who walked around in black and white clothes."

Or the Taj Mahal as "...that one fancy building in Asia."

Or the Beatles as "...those European guys with funny haircuts who used to sing together with Pete Best."

Or Christmas Vacation as being "...that one movie about the family with a weak-ceilinged house whose relatives stay with them."

Technically accurate. But embarrassingly inadequate. I tell you this gently and privately so as to preserve your dignity. Die Hard is so much more than that, and it is a deep part of who I am during this holiday season, so please recognize and respect that. My brothers will forgive you, I'm sure. In time.

And I do look forward to watching Die Hard with you this holiday season. Perhaps for your second - or first? - time. We all make mistakes. Just not usually that bad. Good luck with never speaking of Die Hard that way again. All the best, Rebecca.


Joseph Long.