Christmas Eve Mystery
December 24, 2017 9:42 AM   Subscribe

Question of burning festive importance: what is Perry Como holding on the cover of his "Season's Greetings" Christmas album?

As Mr. Rattery cued up this album to enjoy alongside our shortbread and tea, he asked a very reasonable question: what on earth is Perry Como holding?

Please help make our very own Christmas miracle.

(obligatory Christmas gift)
posted by Mrs. Rattery to Media & Arts (20 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
It could be a phonograph cylinder.
posted by little eiffel at 9:46 AM on December 24, 2017

candy jar?
posted by irisclara at 9:50 AM on December 24, 2017

Looks like it has a knob. Some sort of spinning top?
posted by sageleaf at 10:02 AM on December 24, 2017

The thing on the top made me think it was a flask of liqueur. That or some kind of elaborate ornament?
posted by selfnoise at 10:05 AM on December 24, 2017 [7 favorites]

Reminds me of a Chambord bottle, so I would also guess it's a decanter or bottle.
posted by so fucking future at 10:15 AM on December 24, 2017 [5 favorites]

I think it's a jingle bell instrument, designed for musicians. Jingle bells in a little cage with a handle on top.
posted by under_petticoat_rule at 10:35 AM on December 24, 2017 [9 favorites]

Some relative of the cabasa.
posted by ewok_academy at 10:35 AM on December 24, 2017 [1 favorite]

Either frankincense or mir. I don't think it's gold.
posted by humboldt32 at 10:46 AM on December 24, 2017 [8 favorites]

I really think that's just a liquor or liqueur bottle. I've seen a number of them with somewhat longer necks but the same squat, round body.
posted by HotToddy at 10:58 AM on December 24, 2017 [2 favorites]

It's an ashtray, like one of these.
posted by Rash at 11:29 AM on December 24, 2017

I also thought some sort of insence burner.
posted by Iteki at 11:48 AM on December 24, 2017

It looks like there is no glass in there (to me). I see it as something metal made from 1/4” (or smaller) square steel rod.

In case that helps any...
posted by Vaike at 11:58 AM on December 24, 2017 [3 favorites]

I’m not sure what it is, but without the question I would have assumed it was supposed to remind one of the Three King’s gifts, it looks quite a lot like one of the traditional shapes.
posted by tchemgrrl at 12:54 PM on December 24, 2017 [4 favorites]

My first thought was that it's a percussion instrument called an agbe or shekere like played like the cabasa linked above. But it seems to have a metal frame so now I'm not so sure.
posted by wwax at 12:58 PM on December 24, 2017 [1 favorite]

I’d go with some kind of noisemaker, as it seems to have open sides and he might be holding it in a way that is mid-song.
posted by amanda at 1:42 PM on December 24, 2017

I'd guess ornament, based on the ornaments hanging in the background, but jingle bell cage also sounds about right. I guess it's not a copy of the World's Fair globe without any countries on it.
posted by not_on_display at 10:52 AM on December 25, 2017

Looks like he’s holding the same thing in this video. Doesn’t use it the whole video, and it starts a bit too late to see Santa hand it to him. Definitely looks like a handheld bell set or something.
posted by potch at 11:03 AM on December 25, 2017 [9 favorites]

Yes, potch — it jingles a little when he holds it upside down a few seconds into the video. In fact, it looks like the same backdrop as is on the album cover itself.
posted by not_on_display at 11:13 AM on December 25, 2017 [2 favorites]

Yeah, okay, that is definitely not a bottle. But if it's a bell, why is he holding it so gingerly and not using it? Why does Santa hand it to him and then he just sets it down? That video raises more questions than it answers!
posted by HotToddy at 11:30 AM on December 25, 2017 [1 favorite]

under_petticoat_rule has it. In the video you can hear it when he turns it over, and you can see the little round bells inside. I can't get Google to turn up any sort of result for the particular design he's holding, since they generally look like this now. You probably want to search for "sleigh bell" as "jingle bell" turns up something more like a cymbal than a bell.
posted by fedward at 7:59 PM on December 26, 2017

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