(Original Publication Date, 21 December 1990)
Panel 1: As Liz and the others perform, a voice on the public address system tells the audience "And here, skating to the theme from The Nutcracker Suite, come our own Sugarplum Fairies."
Panel 2: As she watches, Elly is overcome by emotion. Reason: Liz and the others are so beautiful. Witnessing all the children, so practised and precise as they move together with their bright faces full of life and promise makes Elly weep happy tears.
Panel 3: Suddenly, the limiting and destructive need she has to remain stoic in the face of joy lest she lose face seizes hold of her. What, she asks, is she doing getting all weepy-eyed at a mere ice show? Surely, no one else is falling apart.
Panel 4: John proves Elly wrong by audibly blowing his nose because he is just as overcome by this if not more.
Summary: We've just witnessed another reminder that Elly would far rather leave her kid in the lurch than "embarrass" herself in front of other adults. What a pathetic fool she is.