Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Premature Thankulation

Lot’s of folks start putting up Christmas lights and such the day after Thanksgiving. Isn’t that the “Black Friday” of retail shopping horrors? Me, I’m down with the lights because I’m a fanatic. It takes me an entire month to keep adding more and more, a little at a time, until the circuit breakers decide they’ve had enough. I moved five heavy crates of Christmas lights down here to our new digs on South Padre Island – and almost every one of those strings work.

But singing Christmas carols the day after Thanksgiving? That is almost a sacrilege. You carol on Christmas Eve, silly, not on Thanksgiving. All you need is some horns, clarinets, and some sheet music (the kind used for marching bands) and you blow your hearts out, since if you stop the mouthpiece could freeze to your lips. Oh yes, I’ve done that with my old tuba and sousaphone and people liked that.

And it was fun because you just start walking down the street and play in front of houses and people come out and start singing. We couldn’t sing because we were trying to keep our instruments from freezing up. And in some cases, we’d get quite a crowd. We’d play and people would sing until about midnight and then it was time for what we called a “hot toddy.”

My favorite was “Good King Wenceslas” because it had a nice mellow bass part. If you check up on the Good King, he was quite a character and a supporter of Christianity and the poor, back in the tenth century.

But the day after Thanksgiving? Good grief Charlie Brown, that is completely absurd.

In his master's steps he trod
Where the snow lay dinted
Heat was in the very sod
Which the Saint had printed
Therefore, Christian men, be sure
Wealth or rank possessing
Ye who now will bless the poor
Shall yourselves find blessing

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