Friday, December 05, 2008

Looking for a Savior Underneath the Mistletoe

It's Christmas again
December is here
Hasn't it been
A wonderful year

With all the plans you're making
And all the time you're taking
Greet the next one with good cheer
Won't you dear
As you ring the chime
Just because it's Christmastime

And on the tree all the ornaments go
Tinsel will cover where the branches don't grow
There's lights on all the houses
Spouses with their spouses
Children playing in the snow

One in the sleigh and one upon the horse
Keeping on track's another matter, of course
That's the great divisor
You are now the wiser
Maybe just a bit less so
Touch and go
Til you stop on a dime
All alone in Christmastime

Christmas again
December is here
What did you wish for
What did you fear
Look at your behavior
Looking for a savior
Underneath the mistletoe

You should know
It is less a crime
To be all alone in
Christmastime plans were to post something about Christmas songs, my husband's huge collection of said, and some good (imho) non-traditional ones. It was to be a happy post -- penance, if you will, for my last cranky-ish one.

Starting out with "Christmastime" -- the song written by Michael Penn & Jon Brion; recorded as a duet by Aimee Mann and Michael Penn, and by Aimee solo. (Three guesses as to which recorded version I prefer.)

Yes, Virginia, some people should be legally barred
from using Photoshop.

But -- I got so engrossed with making sure the Christmastime lyrics I was posting were correct to the word that I've run out of my allotted blogging time. Although we can only guess what horrors would await me if I chose the incorrect of "divisor" or "deviser" (upon reflection, the "great" preceding tells me it's likely "divisor," as in the 'greatest common divisor'... ) It all adds up to more time spent on trivial stuff, time that I will never ever get back. Story. Of. My. Life

Anyway, Arianna Huffinton (charmingly shilling her book about blogging on The Daily Show the other night) says blogging should be off-the-cuff and unpolished. The first unedited thoughts out of your head.

Viola! I will oblige her here.

Last Christmastime, Esteemed Husband and I decided we would work up a little rendition of "Christmastime" and bestow our singing talents upon the unenlightened masses (that would be our respective families.) Granted, we barely ran through the song twice at home beforehand - still - who would have guess the room-clearing power of our rendition? At both my family's gathering and the gathering with my in-laws.

We'll have to dust off our version again this year for when we want a little alone time at the holiday get-togethers.

Granted, it's a song nobody there knew...and a wee bit dark at that. But one of the things I love about "Christmastime" is how it turns minor with the second verse, as the lyrics start to reveal the shadows cast by the holiday sparkle...okay, maybe it's not all quite that melodramatic, and I'm most likely mixing metaphors wildly. But I enjoy the little journey the lyrics take from "a wonderful year" to "all alone."

My favorite line, or at least the one that sticks with me, is the "Look at your behavior, looking for a savior, underneath the mistletoe." It's nearly a chastisement, and maybe that's why I like it.

And now it's your turn -- feel free to comment, oh ye vast legions of readers (all two or three of you...and that's including husband) with any favorite Christmas songs, lyrics, or room-clearing hints.


At December 05, 2008 3:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Perhaps the inlaws would appreciate this more... a scary blend of photoshop type technology and the cuteness factor of their adorable grandkids you can add in your spare time this holiday season when your not rehearsing for your reprise duet.

At December 06, 2008 6:52 PM, Blogger radiocynic said...

All that this is proving (well, besides that you seem to have far too much free time) is that, through the additional screen of a Santa beard, Michael Penn and Steve Carell might be the same person.

At December 06, 2008 8:49 PM, Blogger Cyn said...

The photo merging only took about 5 minutes, far less time than my "off-the-cuff" writing. Plus, now I have a nifty template that I am going to use to Santa-tize anyone I have a full-face photo of. (Consider yourself warned!)

And thanks to Anonymous's tip I also have the option of doing some sort of combo with kids as elves and us as Santas (note to self, look for Mrs. Claus image...!)

Funny though, I thought Santa Penn looked like Harry Shearer.

But Anonymous & radiocynic -- neither of you gave me any holiday song favorites. Listen, doesn't even have to be a favorite, I'll even take most annoying holiday song (nominating Little Drummer Boy.)

At December 08, 2008 3:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How about an annoying version of Santa Claus is Coming to Town ala Bruce Springsteen. Maybe your daughter can add a rif on her electric guitar and radiocynic could do a little heartfelt talking thing..just like Bruce does...
I'm thinking it's sure to get some toes tapping after the second round of eggnog.

Why do husbands always think you have too much time on your hands??

At December 14, 2008 12:57 PM, Blogger Tom said...

Where does one find the Mann/Penn version of "Christmastime"? I've looked on iTunes with no luck. I have the version from *Drifter* but I'd really like to hear the duet.

At December 14, 2008 9:18 PM, Blogger Cyn said...

Tom -- You could say I'm iTunes challenged...but look for "Just Say Noel" or Aimee's Christmas EP (which preceeded Drifter by a year or two...)

At December 15, 2008 3:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I haven't been able to stop listening to/singing along with "Christmastime" off of Aimee's 'One More Drifter in the Snow' album. She performed it a couple nights ago at her Christmas show, and I'm just surprised that she didn't personally ask me to leave her concert for singing along too loudly. :-) Anyway, God bless, and happy holidays, fellow music lover.


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