Razzle-Dazzle

by | Feb 8, 2024 | Uncategorized

Last Sunday’s Grammy Awards show drew the attention of millions across the globe. Besides wanting to find out which musical artists won the most or the biggest awards of the night, we are mesmerized by the glitz and glamor. Notably, the welcoming red carpet entrance of the stars provides us with the best access to the stars’ razzle-dazzle. The public anxiously looks forward to what the New York Times reported as a “sartorial playground.” We want to know what attire these celebrities will don to draw attention and who designed it. This year, critics credited the wardrobes of Miley Cyrus, Dua Lipa, Kelly Clarkson, Tayor Swift, and Ice Spice as those that raised the most eyebrows.

As I prepare for next Sunday, the phrase “razzle-dazzle” accompanying the Grammy extravaganza has piqued my interest. Common synonyms are: loud, noisy, flashy, glitzy, gaudy, flamboyant, tacky, and flaring. I’ve discovered its earliest use was in an article in the US newspaper “The Saint Paul Globe” in April 1885. Its reference indicated a hostile action to “distract or confuse.”  Later, in June 1887, another newspaper, Pennsylvania’s “The Daily Republican,” used the term in a more favorable setting, reporting a city hall meeting resolved to celebrate the Fourth of July with general “old-time razzle-dazzle.”Today, it seems the phrase is used interchangeably but more closely related to its theatrical synonyms.

Holy Scripture predates the introduction of the phrase razzle-dazzle, regardless of its use. However, the word “dazzling” does indeed debut in the Good Book. The word describes the appearance of Jesus on the mountaintop on the Day of Transfiguration. While his clothes were dazzling white, it wasn’t for a fashion statement. Nor were his garments a tool to distract others. The episode, however, created confusion for the few present disciples. Yet they were instructed not to tell anyone about the mountaintop razzle-dazzle, negating any red carpet reviews the next day.

This Sunday, February 11thjoin us for some possible razzle-dazzle, no matter how you may define it. We will celebrate the Transfiguration of Our Lord at 9:30 AM at St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church.

Blessings, Pastor Marc