December 15, 2008

"Hey man, I love that Burl Ives song, but um, you let Silent Night slip into the mix. That’s kind of awkward because, you know, the Crusades?"

It's so hard to do a Christmas party.

41 comments:

Richard Dolan said...

There's always the Quaker approach to Christmas cheer -- everyone sits around in silence for an hour and then goes home. Cheaper, too.

Issob Morocco said...

Or the Quaker Oats approach which is to eat Rice Cakes alone in a cold house and watch TV replays of animated christmas stories from the early 70's, in the name of looking good on the beaches of St. Maarten in January.

Synova said...

Ugly Sweater Parties.

I like it. :-)

John Burgess said...

I own nary an ugly sweater! If I get one as a gift, I make all the appropriate, appreciative comments. Then, next day, Salvation Army has a new donation and my dresser drawers escape yet another onslaught.

Tibore said...

"Synova said...
Ugly Sweater Parties."


We have that every day at work. The scary thing is that it's unannounced, so it happens spontaeously.

Sad commentary on my wardrobe, I know... :(

MadisonMan said...

No ugly sweaters chez MadisonMan.

My favorite Christmas songs at present are Santa Baby by Eartha Kitt, and Baby it's cold Outside with Dean Martin.

tim maguire said...

I'm afraid I need educating on the connection between Silent Night and the Crusades.

Little help?

bearing said...

Tim,

Silent Night is a Christian song, so anyone who plays it is implicitly endorsing the Crusades.

Which everyone knows were Bad Bad Bad.

Or at least in poor taste.

Alex said...

This is the kind of shit that gives atheists a bad name. Douchebags.

ricpic said...

What's the verdict on reindeer sweaters? Probably ugly, but I love 'em.

Jody said...

Alex: This is the kind of shit that gives atheists a bad name. Douchebags.

If the seems like a parody of what atheists believe, it's because Stuff White People Like is a parody site that parodies urban white liberals.

Ralph said...

Did they get the idea from Bridget Jones' Diary?
I never wear sweaters anymore, and I keep my house in the low 60's. Pullovers made me overheat and reminded me of the Menendez slime and their vile lawyer.

tim maguire said...

Thank you bearing, now it's clear. My initial confusion was related to the fact that silent night was written almost a thousand years after the crusades and refers to an event more than a thousand years before the crusades, missing that particular chapter in the 1,300 year struggle between Islam and Christianity by a wide margin on either side.

I failed, of course, to consider that all christians everywhere and at all times are quilty of all the "bad" things that have been done by any christians at any times.

How I could have missed something that has been relentlessly drilled into me for roughly half my life is beyond me. Somebody must have put decaf in my coffee cup.

bearing said...

So you get the joke now, Tim?

Just checking.

Trooper York said...

30% off on lovely Roni Rabl sweaters at Lee Lee's Valise this week. Just sayn'

Not one of them is ugly.

MadisonMan said...

christians everywhere and at all times are quilty

Quilted sweaters are really the worst.

MadisonMan said...

Trooper, are they wool or cotton? No one in my house wears acrylic sweaters.

Trooper York said...

100% wool from Bulgarian sheep. Not made in China.

Trooper York said...

I tell everyone that they are vampire sheep from Bulgaria and they listen spell bound for a few minutes until they realize I am full of it.

Pogo said...

I appear to be vaguely Irish, so I look good in gaelic style sweater.

But by "good" I mean a 2 or 3, so what's the point?

Oligonicella said...

Alex --

Only in the little minds of those who conflate uberPC liberals with atheists.

reader_iam said...

People who complain about Christmas Carols referencing Christianity make me want to fire up and blast Blowfly's version of "Feliz Navidad" in their ears.

Yes, I agree and admit: This is a very un-Christian and small impulse on the part of me, a sinner.

Pogo said...

But if you do conflate uberPC liberals with atheists, BE CAREFUL.

After 17 or 18 atheists are stuffed in, even one more atheist causes the average uberPC liberal to explode. This leaves a gooey mess and tends to dampen holiday spirits for most partygoers, much as it makes the dip and punch inedible.

chuck b. said...

Until last night I thought I never needed to hear Silent Night ever again for as long as I live, but I heard an unusual, rousing version at a choral performance that thrilled me. Bravo.

They played several Christmasy old American spirituals that I'd never heard (even though I went through a protracted Alan Lomax phase, with musical digressions I pursued for years); my favorite was still the classic Rise Up Shepherd and Follow.

I also enjoyed hearing Langston Hughes' poem In Time of Silver Rain set to music by someone whose name I didn't catch even though those lines are plainly more Easter than Christmas.

Jinge Bells Variations sung by the self-proclaimed "obligatory mezzo-soprao diva" exhorting us to "jingle the bells! jingle the bells!" in full operatic warble was fun too.

On the way home we listened to "Christmas" music on the car radio. All the secular crap was sung, but the Christian-themed carols got converted to instrumentals. John Tesh's instrumental Hark! The Herald Angel Sings made me want to vomit.

Pogo said...

"even though those lines are plainly more Easter than Christmas."


Easter is Christmas crowned.

Pogo said...

"John Tesh's instrumental Hark! The Herald Angel Sings made me want to vomit."

The therapetic window of john Tesh is very narrow. Overdosage is rapid and side effects are sustained, with an inability to rid oneself of the offending tune a common and persistent complaint.

One successful antidote is the immediate ingestion of Joni Mitchell's River.

Justin said...

chuck b. said...

Until last night I thought I never needed to hear Silent Night ever again for as long as I live, but I heard an unusual, rousing version at a choral performance that thrilled me. Bravo.

I had an identical experience with "The Tweleve Days of Christmas". When I saw it on the program I thought "Great, not that crap again." But the arrangement was spectacular.

John Tesh's instrumental Hark! The Herald Angel Sings made me want to vomit.

John Tesh makes me want to vomit.

Darcy said...

Easter is Christmas crowned.

Brilliant, Pogo!

Darcy said...

Yeah, there are ugly sweaters, I know...but guys look good (translation: snuggly) in classic looking sweaters. Sort of rugged, classic looking sweaters.

Oh, never mind! It's hard to pull off.

Favorite Christmas Song: O Holy Night

knox said...

Yes, Tesh is bad... really bad. But there's nothing worse than Manheim Steamroller, I don't care what anyone says. It basically sounds like an amalgam of 500 synthesizers all playing as fast as they can at the same time.

My in-laws always play it and there's this one song where the music stops and these people chant: That's what happens when Frosty gets hot! Ugh, it makes me annoyed just thinking of it.

Joe R. said...

Any type of music is forcing some world view on those who don't share it.

My music tastes are somewhat eclectic, but I hate secular Christmas music. I won't shop in stores if it is playing. I do, however, love religious (especially old hymns) Christmas music, but I can't stand the modern "improvements" (which often involve a ton of instruments and someone with a crappy voice). I often play these types of Christmas songs throughout the year. It has nothing to do with religion (or lack thereof) as I am an atheist... The songs are just beautiful and require great talent to be able to perform well.

Michael_H said...

I hope you enjoy this non-traditional, but beautiful Christmas song by Alison Krauss and Alan Jackson.

Paddy O. said...

Don't give into the PC.

If you're in New York, buy your 100% Bulgarian vampire sheep wool sweaters from Lee Lee's Valise.

And, no matter where you are, buy a wonderful Christmas album from Amy Gustafson. I liked it so much I've decided to marry her in a few weeks.

TMink said...

So are the Christians the only people who did improper things during the Crusades?

I mean, even Wikipedia says that the Muslims captured the Holy Land in the 7th century, and that Muslim incursions into what is now Turkey preceeded the Crusades and were in part, responsible for it.

But only the Christians did bad things a thousand years ago? If that is true, the Muslims were sure advanced back then, because the Islamofacists act horribly now.

Trey

TMink said...

Paddy O, Amy can really sing, she has a lovely clear voice. Thanks for sharing!

Trey

Paddy O. said...

Thanks Trey!

Freeman Hunt said...

On the topic of white people Christmas party themes: In college, there was a big Triple X-Mas party. Not very Christmas-y, I must say.

Michael_H said...

"Triple X-Mas party"

Ho Ho Ho?

Oligonicella said...

Pogo --

"... much as it makes the dip and punch inedible."

That is strictly a matter of opinion.

Ralph said...

Hark! The Herald Angel Sings[sic]
When I was little, I thought it was Hark the Herald, Angels Sing!, and wondered why they'd sing that.

Hazy Dave said...

... nothing worse than Manheim Steamroller...

I don't remember where I picked it up, but when the subject is broached, I always refer to them as Mannheim Steamshovel nowadays, and that seems to help.