Flick of the Tongue

It wouldn't be Christmas without . . . you know.

A Christmas Story Meet the cast from A Christmas Story from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday, November 25, at the Cleveland Play House (8500 Euclid Avenue; 216-795-7000); 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, November 26, at the Renaissance Cleveland Hotel (24 Public Square; 216-696-5600); and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, November 27, at Southpark Mall (500 Southpark Center in Strongsville; 440-238-9000). Admission to all is free.
Fans of A Christmas Story will remember Scott Schwartz as Flick, the 14-year-old kid whose tongue got stuck to a flagpole. But most don't know that Flick grew up to become a talent agent for porn stars. For a while.

"It was the phone calls at three o'clock in the morning," he says. "These girls would whine, 'Scotty, my boyfriend and I had a fight. Can you pick me up?' I'd say, 'Do you have a car? Why are you calling me? Go get a hotel, and leave me alone.' I got tired of all the bullshit."

Today, the 37-year-old Schwartz runs a baseball-card and movie-memorabilia shop with his dad in suburban San Diego. Most weekends, he flies cross-country for autograph sessions with fellow Christmas Story cast members, including Ian Petrella (who played Randy), Zack Ward (Scut), and Tedde Moore (Miss Shields).

This weekend, the foursome stops in Cleveland for three free meet-and-greets (see below for info). They'll also appear at Friday's opening-night performance of the film's stage adaptation at the Cleveland Play House. They'll participate in the Winterfest parade (at 6 p.m. Saturday on Public Square) and will be guests of honor at a screening of the movie (8:15 p.m. Saturday at Tower City Cinemas, 230 West Huron Road; $8, $5.25 for kids).

Partially shot in Cleveland's Tremont neighborhood as well as downtown, the movie is set in 1940s Indiana, where Ralphie is hoping for a BB gun for Christmas. More than two decades later, Schwartz is still floored at the flick's contribution to Americana. "To say we're amazed at its popularity would be the understatement of the millennium," he says. "And it's unbelievable that a nice Jewish kid from New Jersey like me would end up in a Christmas classic." -- Cris Glaser

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