Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Christmas Shoes Redux

If you visited this blog last year, you got my teeing off on this perenial Halmark card version of a Christmas song.

"Christmas Shoes."

It's Dickensian without the charm. It's cloy. I feel like my teeth need a good brushing whenever it comes on, but I also recognize the innocent nature of my children and have tried very hard not to expose my children to my extreme prejudice against this particular musical piece of treacle.

Alas, I have not been successful, at least with the older ones.

My oldest sings it with a mock such that even I have had to tell him to knock it off.

My next eldest is rather like me in temperment. She likewise thinks the song is over the top. It was a source of particular frustration for her when she learned she would have to watch the movie version (my own mind shudders) at school.

She then felt pained as she had to write about what it meant. I pared it down with her in a discussion.

"I know what you think of the song, but that's not what the assignment is. Just write what's it supposed to mean. What does it want to tell?"

"That we should be generous of spirit and help those around us in need rather than focus on buying what we want."

"Yes. Write that."

"Well, they didn't do a very good job." She pouted.
(It is difficult to try to be supportive of an assignment when one is mentally going "YES! HIGH FIVE!" inside).

"Well, you write a better song."

"I will."

My third knows I don't like it, so she just changes the station. (A very sensible child handling her mother well).

The fourth, the little stinker, who has just matriculated to the "older kid set," claims he LOVES the song and demands that the song not only be allowed to play but turned up. He challenges me, "What's so wrong with it?"

If I didn't know how this kid worked, I'd be in trouble. He decided pink is a boy's color just to tork off his younger brother. He's crafty. If it drives you nuts, he loves it. But he has a weak spot.

He also has things he finds unbearable, like Caiou videos. He has even drawn a picture of the cartoon four year old with commentary. "The kid is four years old. Why is he bald?" The picture shows the sad Caiou in shackles with the police congratulating my son on bringing him in and making the world a safer place.

When he cranked the song last time, I told him to expect Caiou videos for Christmas. He had the grace to laugh and turn it down.

The younger set doesn't really know about this battle over a single Christmas carol an I intend to keep it that way.

Having recently put a radio in my daughter's room so she could hear music at night, she called me in to listen to Christmas shoes. "It's really pretty." she said. "And sad. But it's good in the end." This firecracker sunflower child of mine was the only one who was earnest in her love of the song. "I'm glad you like it." I said and kissed her forehead.

Getting sentimental in my middle age or wiser, I'm not sure but I issued two edicts to my older children. "No mocking any Christmas songs." and "You can like or not like whatever songs you wish."

Merry Christmas.

p.s. I still don't like the song.


MightyMom said...


but it beats Blue Christmas hands down.

Then you have Last Christmas which isn't about Christmas at all...or that one about the guy meeting his old girlfriend on ChristmasEve and drinking in her car before driving home in the rain....

There's a few that are worse.

I've enjoyed my music on my blog. Only the songs I like. :-) That's what I've been listening to.

By accident Christmas Shoes got on my blog playlist...soon as I heard it I DELETED it. PERMANENTLY. Felt sooo good.

(for therapy I then played Grandma got run over by a Reindeer--restored my Christmas Spirit)


Helen said...

I actually liked it at first (sorry). But then the book, and the video...if the point was supposed to be to value more than commercialism at Christmas, making it a sort of franchise defeats the point, doesn't it? Now the song gives me the creeps because I can't get over the fact that it was franchised.

Amy said...

I don't like it either. But it's better than the one where the lady is on the bus with her two misbehaving kids and she explains that they are bouncing off the walls because they were up all night with their dying father. That one I truly hate!

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