We lived in Maryland in 2001. We lived in a great neighborhood that had it’s very own Christmas parade. In the parade were a small group from the high school marching band, some cheerleaders from the local Pop Warner team, a Snow Queen and even a Grand Marshal.
There were a few floats and one of them was the caroler float. Since our court (all the street were cul-de-sacs) had been in the neighborhood news for its togetherness and camaraderie, we were asked to make up the Caroler float. Didn’t matter that only one of us could carry a note because he sang in the church choir.
We were a street of mostly military families and government workers. As you can imagine, in the winter of 2001, all of us were pretty busy. So practice sessions were pretty much spent
drinking wine working, and consequently we were a little less than prepared as we boarded the float the night of the parade.
As the parade made its way around the circle that encompassed our neighborhood, people came out with their children, walked to the end of their courts to watch and sang along as we muddled through Rudolph, Jingle Bells and Silent Night.
After the first go round of Christmas carols and a few attempts at ones that hadn’t been practiced, we gave up the carols and started singing the National Anthem. I mean what the heck? Our country was pulling together in ways we haven’t seen since WWII and we were on the brink of war. What better time to share our love of country than at Christmas.
We were a HIT!!
We sang all the classics, America The Beautiful, Anchors Away and even the Marine Corps Hymn. But the anthem? We must have sang that 10 times as we made our way around the circle of our neighborhood. We all knew the words and never missed a beat. Even the kids on the float with us.
It was awesome to see our neighbors come out in the cold and sing along with us. At a time when most people are thinking about Christmas cookies and presents, we, as a whole neighborhood, came together to remember that our country is strong and will always stand together in her hour of need.
I know those weren’t “real” Christmas songs, but they were good for that year. I mean, I wouldn’t sing the Anthem every year at Christmas (but it really is my favorite song, so maybe I would, if I thought I could get away with it). But it really isn’t a Christmas song, is it?
You know what else really isn’t a Christmas song? Same Old Lang Syne by Dan Fogelberg
Every time I hear that song on the radio I’m like what makes this a Christmas song?? Just because he meets his girlfriend in a grocery store on Christmas Eve? Gimme a break. They didn’t walk in a winter wonderland, they didn’t ride in a one horse open sleigh, they didn’t even roast any chestnuts! They sat in the car and drank. Eggnog? No, beer. Sounds like prom night to me. I’m just sayin.
Do you have a favorite Christmas story or song? Tell us about it.
And it doesn’t even have to be very Christmasy.