Here goes: I have an intense dislike for "The Christmas Shoes," to the extent that hearing just a few notes of it when flipping through radio stations elicits a fairly violent response from me. Yes, "The Christmas Shoes," one of the most beloved songs of all time. To many people, this is akin to saying you don't like oxygen.
Here is a sample of the lyrics:
It was almost Christmas timeThere I stood in another line
Trying to buy that last gift or two
Not really in the Christmas mood
Standing right in front of me
Was a little boy waiting anxiously
Pacing around like little boys do
And in his hands he held
A pair of shoes
And his clothes were worn and old
He was dirty from head to toe
And when it came his time to pay
I couldn't believe what I heard him say
Now, I love holiday songs as much as the next girl. I can Feliz Navidad with the best of them. I even have over 100 Christmas tunes on my iPod. But this cloying song with its treacly lyrics . . . I just can't hack it. I think what bugs me the most is the fact that the child is portrayed as poor AND dirty. It's not enough that his mom is dying and that he doesn't have enough pennies to buy her some shoes to meet Jesus, he also has to be a crudbucket on top of it. That those living in poverty are unclean - ah, I don't know, the concept just bugs me, I guess. And yet, the world was so moved by this song that it was made into a film. A film!
At times, we all need to be reminded that Christmas isn't just about commercialization and consumption. But seriously, aren't there less saccharine ways to get the message across? Even my personal favorite Christmas movie, "The Muppets Christmas Carol" does a better job of it.
So there you have it. Please accept my apologies for disliking "The Christmas Shoes." Don't even get me started on "Butterfly Kisses."