A site of satirical musings, commentary and/or rhetorical criticism of the world at large.

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Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Rolling Around the Floor with Our Favorite Holiday Tunes

It’s time once again for my annual state of the seasonal songs. This is the time of year when everyone, regardless of religious or cultural beliefs, is subjected to a relentless barrage of aural good cheer and (honestly) sincere wishes for peace. I do this commentary every year resulting in entries that range from profound rhetorical criticism to cranky rantings. This year let’s revisit two perennial holiday favorites that stand at opposite extremes of the spectrum of human emotion: Happy Holidays” and Christmas Shoes.

This year I had an epiphany when I heard Happy Holidays nearly non-stop as I shopped in King of Prussia. I heard the song playing over the mall’s speakers as I exited the book store and walked quickly before I was assaulted with its nauseating use of the words “whoop-de-doo” (on which I’ve dwelt in a previous entry). Once back in my car, I turned on the radio only to find — yes, you guessed it — the same version of Happy Holidays playing!

Immediately, I interpreted this sequence of events as a sign from on high. In my lifetime, another song assigns God-like qualities to major holiday icon, Santa Claus. We all know the one, “he sees you when you’re sleeping/he knows when you’re awake/he knows when you’ve been bad or good...”, etc. I now believe that Santa is getting credit where credit is not due. We should consider assigning the omniscience, omnipresent qualities to Andy Williams!

Yes, Andy Williams is God! He is everywhere — in the malls, in the stores, on the radio, in the air, in my HEAD! His version of Happy Holidays is relentless, and only stops when the calendar proclaims it is December 26th. Don’t get me wrong: Andy Williams is a great singer and his version of Moon River is the definitive version of the Henry Mancini composition. It’s just that...oh, sigh of sighs...I can’t take hearing Happy Holidays more than once a season.

This brings us to the equally insufferable Christmas Shoes. Please believe me, events in real life forced me to face the death of a loved one during this happiest of seasons. So in one small sense I do empathize with the song’s child character. That doesn’t mean I want to wallow every year in a mud puddle of maudlinity. (Hey, if Sarah Palin can refudiate, than I can certainly invent new phrases to express drenchingly sad sentimentality!)

Christmas Shoes reminds me of the statistic that suicides spike every year during the holiday season. Now I don’t want to strongly imply that this song pushes people to this final act just because I put the title in the same sentence with this grim reminder. I have no proof, but still you have to wonder about a possible connection.

On the other hand, I can’t recall anyone describing their mood after hearing Christmas Shoes as giddy. Seriously, has anyone overheard someone say, “I just love hearing about small children losing their parents to a dreaded disease! Why it just makes me want to RATFLOL!” (Again, if Sarah Palin can conjure up the spirit of Shakespeare in her quest to remake the English language, then I can certainly Roll Around The Floor Laughing Out Loud!) I’m just saying be careful what you listen to and gauge your holiday mood accordingly.

(Thank you for reading. Please remember a joyous mood does not live by music and lyrics alone.)


Anonymous Janey said...

"maudlinity"? WTF???


PS: Happy Holidays -- from Andy Williams! :-)

December 21, 2010 at 3:57 PM  

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