Santa and Victoria

It is late January, 2002 as i write this. While it might be a little bit late, or ridiculously early, to offer a Christmas song to you, i hope you’ll not mind. i finished it around New Year and just recently put it on tape.

A few days before Christmas, i took four of my nieces to Montgomery for an overnight excursion. They are delightful company. We were privileged to stay with new friends, Judge Mark and Jean Anderson, in whose home i had done a concert back in October. (Thanks, Mark and Jean, for your kindness. The girls still talk about the way y’all treated them like royalty – orange juice in bed before breakfast!!)

We went to the Alabama Shakespeare Festival to see “A Christmas Carol” (after dinner at the Montgomery Country Club; yes, i had to put on one of the two neckties that i now own). After the play, we returned to the Andersons for more food, music around the Christmas tree, and good conversation. Next morning, it was more good conversation, pancakes and a visit with Jean’s friend and house helper, Mattie, before bidding them farewell.

Shopping malls are not my favorite place to spend much time (though, like airports, they can offer some fascinating people watching). Still, i had promised the girls that i’d take them there for some Christmas shopping, so it was to the mall we went. (Amazing, isn’t it, what you’ll do for somebody you love.)

While the girls shopped, i stationed myself near the Santa display and watched the traffic walk by, including a constant river of little children who, i presume, were on a field trip at the Montgomery Mall. i read a bit, wrote some letters, and, inspired by what i saw there, began this song. It’s written with only kind

intentions. i do like Santa and Victoria after all, but wonder if we lose focus in their presence sometimes.

Lyrics

This year they put Santa in the Montgomery Mall

right next to Victoria’s Secret

A line stretched forever of children so small

next to Victoria’s Secret

A strange contradiction but somehow not quite

both of them wearing their best red and white

Selling the promise of endless delight

next to Victoria’s Secret

The children were glued to that kind old St. Nick

next to Victoria’s Secret

While the grown ups were glued to the curves of St. Vic

next to Victoria’s Secret

The kids had their lists for the man in the sleigh

While the mannequin stood there in fine lingerie

Both making a promise that neither could pay

that is Victoria’s Secret

BRIDGE

See the soft rosy cheeks and the long flowing hair

both dressed up in lace with a holiday flair

We shoppers would be very wise to beware

or we’ll miss the whole season again.

Now the pleasures they offer are perfectly good

but they can’t fill our hearts like we wish that they would

They know how to fool me, Victoria and Nick

to dress up the dream, make it glossy and slick

And I’m all too eager to fall for the trick,

next to Victoria’s Secret

The day after Christmas they’ll take it away

they’ll move the big chair and they’ll box up the sleigh

Perhaps they’ll not see the small Kid in the hay

next to Victoria’s Secret

This year they put Santa in the Montgomery Mall

next to Victoria’s Secret

Listen