Random Thoughts

Some Christmas Thoughts

I figured since my last couple posts about Christmas were kind of depressing, I’d post a couple more thoughts that are at least not quite as depressing.  I make myself sound more miserable than I really am through my songs and my posts, but it would be boring to just post about my day to day thoughts, the highlights of which would be “Is 10:30am too soon for a beer?” or “do they still make Tato Skins?” or “how much would I allow myself to pay to rent Saw IV?  Can I justify $2?”  So anyway, some slightly less emotional thoughts about the season.

– Do you ever really listen to the lyrics of Christmas songs you sing along with?  Sure there’s the occasional “partridge in a pear tree” kinds of lines that we all know but have no clue what it really is, but a few others I’ve noticed recently:

“Let’s give thanks to the Lord above because Santa Claus comes tonight.” – a mixed theology there to say the least

There’ll be scary ghost stories and tales of the glories…” – who’s telling ghost stories at Christmas?  I haven’t even heard my grandparents talk about this tradition, and they’ve been around since before the song was written.  But I do have to say I kind of like the idea of this tradition.  Maybe the traditional Christmas Eve horror movie?
All the lyrics of “Baby It’s Cold Outside” – Have you ever listened to these?  First off, the whole song is suspiciously close to being about date rape (ie lines like “The neighbors may think, hey what’s in this drink?” The real question there being is “hey what’s in this drink?” a new thought or part of the neighbors thoughts, or is the woman slowly losing consciousness?).  Clearly this is not a song about mutual indecision to end the date, it’s uncomfortably forced from the male side.

To add to that discomfort, the female also has a few lines such as “My mother will start to worry,” “My father will be pacing the floor,” and “my brother will be there at the door.”  First off, she clearly has a large family, all the members of which are for some reason waiting up for her to come home.  So she’s also clearly the pretty daughter of a wealthy family in a Jane Austen novel, which also seems to suggest she’s 18, maybe 19 or 20 tops.

Then to top it all off, I can only ever picture Lou Rawls singing the male part, putting him at about 55, making an age difference of 35 years minimum.

So yeah, it’s just a creepy song

– The whimsicality of Christmas has returned a little bit for me since I’m sitting in my parents’ house right now.  With all my mother’s decorations, and the PERFECT terrible weather outside, I just want to live in Whoville, or at least the little village my mother has setup on top of the entertainment center.

– There’s an ad that features an old woman wrestling away a six pack of Heineken from a young man at a party.  What old woman do you know that not only drinks Heineken, but would want it enough to wrestle it away from someone?

– I mentioned this a little bit before, but Christmas is such a nostalgic time of year, as is really any time that is saturated with tradition, but for me Christmas is the big one.  There’s also a built in sadness with nostalgia, which is not altogether unpleasant, but can be overwhelming for me at times.  Whenever thinking about the past, there’s an inherent sadness not because of any sort of regret, but simply because things once were and are no longer.  When I come to my home town, which is a really small town, I’m often overwhelmed by the amount of memories I have, and the sadness that comes from realizing things are no longer how they were.  And it’s not that I dislike my life now, and remember how great it once was, but it feels a little bit like visiting my childhood after an apocalypse.  All the buildings are still there, but everything has changed, me most of all.

And Christmas has that nostalgia built in.  However, it is comforting to be in the source of a lot of those memories.  I think about all the times I sat and watched football with my dad during the holidays, while I sit and watch football with my dad.  The times I came home from college and watched Crocodile Hunter and ate nuts and bolts (my mother’s amazing chex mix).  The mountains of wrapping paper and the thousands of gifts given over the years, from the 10 or so Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle action figures left out from “Santa” one year, to the mountain bike also from Santa, to the recent Radio Controlled Inflatable Sumo Wrestlers (the most absurd toy ever, picked out by my sister and brother in law).  The number of times my sister has screamed and shaken her hands in the air when opening a present, reminding us all why she’s so much fun to get stuff for.  But most of all I think of all the love I have for my family, and how special they have all made Christmas for me.
I just realized that I may be the curmudgeonly old man who just learned the true meaning of Christmas.

5 thoughts on “Some Christmas Thoughts”

  1. I’ve been thinking that about Baby It’s Cold Outside too – he’s creepy! And why is her family so concerned? From a feminist perspective, the weak female character is pretty gross. However, since I kind of like the song, I reframe it in my head to be about how she really wants to stay, but needs to play the innocent. Which is still kind of misogynistic crap, but realistic.

  2. I was totally thinking about the two first songs you mentioned, as I have been listening to a lot of Christmas music on repeat at work. In addition to the scary ghost stories, I am curious about what the tales of the glories of Christmases long long ago might be.

    I am glad you found your Christmas spirit. See you very soon!

  3. Your mom has one of those tiny villages too, eh? My mom put hers on top of the piano this year… but when they asked me to play Christmas music this year, I had to push it all aside to make room for my laptop which has all my music on it.

    Turns out, it didn’t really work out all that well. As you know, my vision isn’t good enough to read the screen from more than 3″ away so it kinda stopped before it started and there was a laptop-shaped hole in the village afterwards.

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