Okay, so the case can be made that “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” is even worse. That one’s issue is singular – it’s creepy at best and just plain wrong at worst (and let’s be honest, that’s probably the end of the spectrum it’s on). However, “The Christmas Shoes” has so much bad going for it that it’s hard to ignore.
For those who have never heard “The Christmas Shoes,” or need a little refresher, here it is. I encourage you to simply listen to it rather than go along with the music video. And if you can make it to the end without piercing your eardrums with the sharpened end of a candy cane, congratulations.
My first beef with the song is that it comes across as so contrived. It feels completely disingenuous to me. Personal opinion that I can’t really back up, but whatever, if you don’t like that, write your own blog post about it.
Now, let’s pick apart the story. And there’s a lot to pick apart.
His clothes were worn and old, he was dirty from head to toe
I’ll give a pass to the clothing, but the complete dirtiness? Why is this kid so filthy? I sure would like to know, but this is never explained. I suppose it’s a detail that’s just shoe-horned in there in an attempt to pull at my heartstrings.
Sir, I want to buy these shoes for my mama, please
It’s Christmas Eve and these shoes are just her size
How many kids know their mom’s shoe size? None. I’m a 32-year-old man and don’t know my mom’s shoe size. I don’t even know my wife’s shoe size.
Could you hurry, sir, daddy says there’s not much time
You see she’s been sick for quite a while
And I know these shoes would make her smile
And I want her to look beautiful if mama meets Jesus tonight
WHAT FATHER LETS HIS CHILD GO OUT WHEN THE MOTHER IS ON HER DEATHBED WHAT IS HAPPENING THIS MAKES NO SENSE
He counted pennies for what seemed like years
Then the cashier said, “son, there’s not enough here”
He searched his pockets frantically
Then he turned and he looked at me
When does this story take place that one could buy shoes with just pennies? Are we in some weird time warp? Or are the shoes actually a normal price and this kid thought he could buy them for a matter of cents? I’m totally baffled. And if he actually did have almost sufficient money (let’s say the shoes were 30 bucks and he was 15 cents short), what kind of monster is this cashier?
Somehow I’ve got to buy her these Christmas shoes
What are “Christmas shoes” and are they different from “Advent shoes” or “Easter shoes” or “Monday shoes”? I don’t even know what those are.
I knew that God had sent that little boy
To remind me just what Christmas is all about
And what’s that? That it really is about buying things? C’mon, man. Also, I have my doubts that God decided to give a woman a terminal illness just so you could feel better about Christmas.
I think it’s time to go listen to something less ridiculous, like “Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer.”