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Baby, it’s cold outside

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HER:

I really can’t stay. I’ve got to go away. This evening has been so very nice. My mother will start to worry and father will be pacing the floor so, really, I’d better scurry. Well, maybe just a half a drink more . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The neighbors might think, say what’s in this drink? I wish I knew how to break this spell. I ought to say: no no no sir — at least I’m going to say that I tried. I really can’t stay, ah, but it’s cold outside.

I simply must go. The answer is no. This welcome has been so nice and warm. My sister will be suspicious. My brother will be there at the door. My maiden aunt’s mind is vicious. Well, maybe just a cigarette more . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . I got to get home. Say, lend me a comb. You’ve really been grand but don’t you see? There’s bound to be talk tomorrow, at least there will be plenty implied. I really can’t stay, ah, but it’s cold outside.

Baby, it’s Cold Outside.” Not a Christmas song, never been a Christmas song. Not sure how it was ever considered to be a Christmas song. Just as appropriate to play in January — it’ll still be cold out — but that won’t happen. This baby rolls out Thanksgiving day and goes right back to bed with Frosty and Rudolph the moment Sunday morning arrives.


But it’s not a Christmas song. If it is, it’s the Tareq and Michaele Salahi of Christmas songs — it wasn’t invited, it doesn’t belong there but now it has a reality show so we’ll find a place for them on the album.

Written by the great Frank Loesser in 1944 and covered by everyone, including Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey in 2007. More recently covered again by Jessica Simpson, this time with an 8-piece meal from KFC, including mashed potatoes, gravy and biscuits for just $14.99 for a limited time. In this version, the two never make it out of the house and it’s not even snowing.

HIM:

But baby, it’s cold outside. But baby, it’s cold outside. Been hoping that you’d drop in. I’ll hold your hands, they’re just like ice. Beautiful, what’s your hurry? Listen to the fireplace roar. Beautiful, please don’t hurry. Put some records on while I pour . . . Baby, it’s bad out there. No cabs to be had out there. Your eyes are like starlight now. I’ll take your hat, your hair looks swell. Mind if I move in closer? What’s the sense of hurtin my pride? Baby, don’t hold out. Baby, it’s cold outside.

But baby, it’s cold outside. But, baby it’s cold outside. How lucky that you dropped in. Look out the window at that storm. Gosh your lips look delicious. Waves upon a tropical shore. Gosh your lips are delicious. Never such a blizzard before . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . But baby, you’d freeze out there. It’s up to your knees out there. A thrill when you touch my hand. How can you do this thing to me? Think of my life long sorrow if you caught pneumonia and died. Get over that old doubt. Baby, it’s cold outside.

Simply put, he’s using the excuse of weather as a means to leverage closure on a booty call. The weather is an afterthought. This isn’t about Christmas, it’s called “being a guy.” He’s exaggerating the conditions and, come on, he has no idea what the weather is really supposed to do. He’s making this up as he goes. She came to his place and he wants her to stay.

It’s a song of young love, long before rophenol would have ended the discussion a few sips into her first beverage. Who knows where this song ends in today’s overproduced mass-media? Possibly straight to the candy shop.

She doesn’t know what gets into her when she’s around him. Had the weather been nice that day, it’s likely the guy still would have had an excuse to help her find out. A guy can blame anything on the weather.

But she knew what she was getting into. Jodie Foster didn’t just come to the bar to play pinball. This girl risked her reputation going to his place and she (more than anyone) realizes that if people are going to talk (and they will), might as well also drink liquor and smoke cigarettes while you’re at it. I mean, why the hell not? The kissing will be the least of anyone’s concern. And how old is this girl again? Has any carded these two?

He kisses her, enough to mess her hair. Immediately he tells her he’s never seen a blizzard like that before. Please tell me we’re still talking about the snowstorm. And just like a guy — when all else is exhausted — to resort to playing the “what if you died, how would it effect me?” card. Beautifully done and skillfully shameless.

But this is just your standard Christmas song material. Deck the halls and jingle your bells. Ho, ho, ho and jingle her bells. Fa-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la.

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