As we all know, our music playlists make a massive veer off our everyday road and include everything from quirky, goofy and one might even say BIZARRE Santa songs, to the other end of the sonic spectrum being sacred Christmas carols. It is both the best and possibly even weirdest time of the year.
All throughout this season, people who you’d never expect to sing Christmas songs..actually do. I mean, Frank Sinatra singing the sacred poem “O Little Town of Bethlehem” or the oddly paired duet of David Bowie and Bing Crosby harmonizing on “Little Drummer Boy”. The story goes that Bowie never liked Crosby and in return, Bing probably didn’t know the first thing about Space Oddity. Groups that must exist only for spins at Christmas, appear on cue..Ferrante and Teicher, Mannheim Steamroller, the Vince Guaraldi Trio and Boney M, just to name some of these "One Season A Year One Hit Wonders". Strangest part about all of this is that once you’ve lived a bunch of decades, you’re so used to this weirdness that it wouldn’t the same without the random melange of musical selections.
As I’m sure you know, it’s not just the style or genre of music that’s different..it’s everything! We decorate like nobody’s business and we eat things that are to say the least “unique”. To say the most, items like Egg Nog, Figgy Pudding, Chocolate Babka and there’s even such seasonal specific sweets as Christmas Cookies and Christmas Fruit-cake. All of the sudden, Cranberry, Gingerbread or Peppermint flavoured anything seems to be an obsession for about 2 months of the year, but then goes stale during the remaining 10 months of the year.
On a more pensive/sober topic, some of the simplest yet surprisingly significant writings have centred around the festive season. I’m both inspired and motivated by the poem attributed to Clement C. Moore entitled “Twas the Night Before Christmas A Visit From St. Nicholas”. This childlike compilation of rhyming verses is comprised of 12 sets of four lines each. It has been referred to as “arguably the best-known verses ever written by an American”. What an incredible statement! However simplistic its message may be, almost 200 yrs later it is still recited the Sunday before Dec. 25th at Church of the Intercession in Manhattan. Did you know that it was originally written anonymously and was not credited to Moore for 14 years? Point being, his reason for writing it was altruistic and not for personal gain. He wrote it for his children and if not for a friend who sent it in to the local paper, it would never would have been known to us.
I can only aspire or dream of having penned such a piece of literature that it is not only recited annually, but also remembered indefinitely. This desire to create meaningfully is intrinsic to all of us. We long to have a lasting legacy that outlives our mortal existence. During this Christmastime synonymous for being a season of giving, prioritize some of your hustle bustle schedule and give. Whether that is done using by your creativity to methodically craft some meaningful prose or maybe by just giving to a cause around you. There are certainly no shortage of worthy efforts to expend your time and energy doing. The Bible speaks of wisely spending our time, our talents and our treasures. Let’s boldly dance into the year 2020 by making an indelible imprint on the world we live in.
“Happy Christmas to ALL and to ALL a Good Night!”