Accept the Gift

This is my traditional Christmas post.

First posted 12/11/2016 as The Night Bobby Found Christ in an Abandoned Subway Car.

I imagined a modern Nativity and saw a homeless kid who finds the abandoned Christ child in an old subway car.

Will he accept the burden of this gift?

An avatar that represents an alternate named Bobby is shown finding the Christ child in an abandoned subway car
A homeless youth finds the abandoned Christ child in an unused subway car.

I got the idea for the subway car from Dark Days, a documentary made in the 1990’s about a tribe of homeless people who live in the abandoned subway tunnels of New York.

I used VR to make a video of it.

I use two photo-shopped frames from the documentary as an homage to it.

I first came up with this idea in 2011 but didn’t have the skill I needed
to make a video work the way I envisioned it.

I was going to remake the video for this Christmas but had a soul sucking
bout of the  flu that still lingers.

The video works but I see ways to make it better so I WILL remake the video
for next Christmas.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to the World!

May we find our way back to reason and light.

I’ll see you guys after Christmas.

The video is a series high-resolution panels staged and shot in virtual reality and processed in multiple apps.

I cropped a cover of Silent Night  found at the Internet Archives.

To the best of my knowledge the recording is in the public domain.

Rob Goldstein 2016-2018
Revised 2018

Variations on a Theme

I’m on a short break from therapy.

It’s hard to question your motives and beliefs twice a week, every week.

I used last week’s rain as a reason not to go.

There are times when I want to know what it feels like just to live.

That’s not the way it’s going to be for me, not yet— I can feel
my mind split open in preparation for this afternoon’s session.

When I feel low I distract myself with humor and wordplay.

I’m a big fan of Mystery Science Theater 3000 because of the wordplay.

New episodes of MST3K are in production and headed for Netflix this year.

For people who don’t know the show here’s a sample:


A conversation about astrology yesterday led to thoughts of the Firesign Theater so I ran a search for them on the Internet Archives.

If you’re feeling down I offer this story of ‘Genesis’ as told by the Firesign Theater.

It is an excerpt from “I Think We’re all Bozos on this Bus.”

Before the beginning, there was this turtle. And the turtle was alone. And he looked around, and he saw his neighbor, which was his mother. And he lay down on top of his neighbor, and behold! she bore him in tears an oak tree, which grew all day and then fell over — like a bridge. And lo! under the bridge there came a catfish. And he was very big. And he was walking. And he was the biggest he had seen. And so were the fiery balls of this fish, one of which is the sun, and the other, they called the moon.

Firesign Theatre



The Avatar

A collage made by combining a public domain photo of a Russian Icon with a photo of a Second Life avatar.
A collage made by combining a public domain photo of a Russian Icon with a screenshot of a Second Life avatar.

My favorite Gregorian Chant

Cantores in Ecclesia
Kyrie Chant
Usage Public Domain

A Skeleton in the Attic -Part One-

Once upon a time there was a big house that had a skeleton in the attic.

The family that lived there was scared of the skeleton.

The Mother and Father insisted told the little boy to never go into the attic.

But one day, the little boy who was always sad and lonely,  climbed into the attic.

When he opened the door he saw the skeleton sprawled on the floor.

The Skeleton in the Attic-0


The Skeleton frightened the little boy so he sat on a trunk far away from it and thought about it.

For a whole year the little boy crept into the attic and pondered the Skeleton.

The Skeleton in the Attic

One day the little boy realized that he had stopped feeling scared so he decided to sit closer to the skeleton.

He sat right next to it and talked to it.

He told the Skeleton about all the things that frightened him, and how he was afraid to come into the attic.

Another year passed and excited by one of his conversations the little boy touched the skeleton.

He was startled by how hard and cold the old bones were.

But he was even more startled when the Skeleton said hello.

The Skeleton thanked the little boy for touching him, because by touching him the little boy gave him a voice.

“I have waited for one year to talk to you, and now your gentle touch has unlocked my voice. Now when you visit we can talk to each other.

For the rest of that year the boy and the Skeleton talked.

The boy asked the Skeleton about death.

He asked the Skeleton why his parents were afraid of him.

The Skeleton replied; “People hate the things that remind them that they are mortal.

People hate me because in my presence they can’t pretend that they won’t die.

The little boy was happy to have a friend.

He thought that if he gave the skeleton some clothes it would feel better about itself, so he gave it a hat.

He embraced the skeleton gently to lift it up so he could place the hat on its skull.

And when he did, the skeleton moved by itself.

The Skeleton said, “Your embrace gave me strength, now I can move on my own.”

For the rest of that year the boy and the Skeleton went for walks around the attic and laughed. They loved each other and were grateful to each other for the gifts they had shared.

A Skeleton in the Attic

A Skeleton in the Attic – Part Two-

(c) Rob Goldstein 1986

Images made in VR by Rob Goldstein 2011