They may be loath to admit it, but cynics have their own Christmas traditions too. While the tinsel-lovers and popcorn-stringers are reading "'Twas the Night Before Christmas" for the umpteenth time, the rest of us are cueing up David Sedaris' Santaland Diaries, either performed in his peerless drawl for NPR or collected in his Holidays on Ice collection. Sedaris' monologues recount his experiences working as Santa's elf at a New York Macy's, and the special brand of Yuletide hell he experienced while wrangling besotted Santas, bratty kids and horrendous parents. To help bring these magical episodes to life, Stray Dog Theatre presents the one-man-show adaptation of Sedaris' stories, starring Ben Watts as the Krumpet, the elf with the poison tongue. Santaland Diaries is performed at 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday (December 1 through 17), with a 2 p.m. matinee on the final Saturday. The show takes place at Tower Grove Abbey (2336 Tennessee Avenue; 314-865-1995 or www.straydogtheatre.org), and tickets are $18 to $20.
Thursdays-Saturdays. Starts: Dec. 1. Continues through Dec. 17, 2011