Let me paint you a picture…
This past Saturday night the Ministers of Health, Letters, A&D and MOM were accompanied by two lovely young ladies to the [Third Annual Christmas Sweater Festival](http://www.theelrey.com/view-details.php?id=467), a Charity Benefit for Teen Impact, a program at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles for teens and young adults with, or recovering from, cancer. Hosted at the [El Rey](http://www.theelrey.com/index.php) Theater in Los Angeles, CA.
The show was headlined by ‘The Deadly Syndrome’ a favorite local band of a few IFS members. The Drummer for ‘The Deadly Syndrome’, Jessie Hoy is a Gaucho alum and longtime friend. I don’t go to many shows, but will rarely miss the ‘Syndrome’ at the El Rey.
In an intermission period between bands, an ugly Christmas sweater competition was held. Various hipsters donned skinny jeans, tight sweaters, some carrying Christmas ornaments, some lit up by Christmas lights, some wearing full Christmas regalia, complete with red pants, sweater vests, and bow ties. There was even a bear who had a shirt on that read ‘Beary Christmas’. Strong showing. Then there was MOH, unshaven, non-skinny jeans, beer in hand (the only one on stage drinking), beer buzzed grin, and cloaked in the most glorious Christmas sweater Los Angeles has ever seen. While the sweater itself was lovely, complete with Christmas trees, Santa Claus embroidery, etc. The Coup de grâce were the buttons on the sweater, which were actually JINGLE BELLS. POW!!!
The judging went in two stages, the half-wits and the fashion challenged were unceremoniously herded off the stage to boos and angry fist pumps. Health easily made it to the final round of judging, where Mr. Hoy would present each competitor to the crowd and listen for applause. Then the highly accurate and highly scientific applause ‘o’ meter was used to precisely determine the strength of each Christmas Sweater, based on audience acceptance. Letters, A&D, MOM and two lovely ladies spearheaded the ‘Bells’ (As in ‘JINGLE BELLS’) cheering section. When the MC and Mr. Hoy came to Health and presented him to the crowd, and jingled his ‘Bells’ into the microphone, we erupted in applause, cheers, and drunken shouts of “THE BELLS! THE BELLS!!!!!”. The applause ‘o’ meter spiked and hipsters everywhere cowered behind their PBRs.
The running was tight between THE BELLS, the Bear, and some hipster with a crappy sweater decorated by 6 Christmas lights (whom ‘THE BELLS’ cheering section booed ruthlessly). After double checking the applause ‘o’ meter, and a seemingly endless deliberation, the judges emerged to announce ‘THE BELLS’ as the winner of the Ugly Christmas Sweater competition! Everyone was sobbing, hugging, kissing and popping bottles of the finest Champagne, we had done it!!! Victory!!!
Below is a picture of the champ and lovely lady #2, post victory.
The show was a raging success, and Health was a local celebrity for the remainder of the night. Before long ‘[The Deadly Syndrome](http://thedeadlysyndrome.com/)’ came on a rocked a strong set for all the Holiday revelers. Including the following song Eucalyptus:
I would highly suggest this band to friends, their first album ‘The Ortolan’ was great, and their new album will be out in March. Next time they play in LA, we’ll make a post about it, and while I cannot guarantee such a grand spectacle, I can promise a good rock show and fun times with friends. Good Flapjack.