So Now A Christmas Song Is Really Talking About Date Rape

I am finding the nearest nuclear bunker. Locally we are witnessing the simultaneous crucifixion of Maria Ressa , journalism, good manners, good looks and civilization. Abroad the #metoo movement has worked its way into banning staple holiday songs. Over the next few paragraphs I will make a case about censorship and assignment of meaning but in no way am I endorsing any kind of sexual exploitation of any woman, date or driver of a sitting Secretary of Justice.

The song in the holiday season of 2018 that is garnering the headlines is Baby Its Cold Outside. It has been sung by many people on screen and in vinyl including Dean Martin, Will Ferrell, Martina McBride, Ella Fitzgerald, Michael Buble but I really had no idea its first appearance was in the big screen in a movie called Neptune’s Daughter . The singers were Ester Williams and Ricardo Montalban. Yes my favorite big screen villain next to Hans Gruber , Khan sung the song.

Before Mr Rourke, before Khan Noonien Singh there was Neptune’s Daughter

So let me get this straight. A song  written in 1944  is only now in 2018 seen as worthy of the garbage bin. A mere  seventy four  years later? The hysteria started out in Cleveland, Ohio  but spread north of the border to three Canadian networks: CBC, Rogers and Bell.  In my soapbox that is called Get Real Philippines I champion a few causes and one of them is preserving the classics. Song writing is dead and musicianship is dead because millenials do not care about quality. Now we are expected to believe a song that has survived 74  years because of its own intrinsic quality deserves to be deep-sixed because some sensitive people ” inject” their own meaning?? Forget #journalismisnotacrime we should all get behind #seasonalsongsarenotacrime.

Those Klingon bastards are banning Baby Its Cold Outside

What exactly is everybody up in arms about?? Why is the sky falling Chicken Little? This excerpt from Canoe.com seems to sum it up.

Earlier this week, Cleveland radio station WDOK-FM announced it was no longer playing the song in response to listener feedback. Some took issue over lyrics where one singer is trying to persuade the other to stay inside, with exchanges that include, “What’s in this drink?” and “Baby, don’t hold out.”

 

So let us look at the two phrases quoted:

1) “What’s in this drink?”

In 2018 some people are inserting their own connotation of Rohypnol (proprietary or brand name), also known as “roofies,” “rope,” and “roaches. More popularly known as the date rape drug. Have you ever asked what is in a fruit punch even before you were consuming alcoholic drinks? Have you ever asked what is in the dip at a party? It is natural to ask what is in something you are about to eat or drink. My question is if certain people feel their interpretation of a 74 year old song is so correct and the potential so destructive that it supersedes your opportunity that has been around  74 years from making up your own mind what it is about?

I forgot where in my miserable life that I learned the concept of connotation and denotation. I invite you to look it up yourself but connotation includes feelings and associations of a word. Simply put, it allows for bias. Denotation is the precise meaning of the word. What you see in the dictionary.  Isn’t that how wars start and lives are lost when one feels their biased opinion is better than the other person’s biased opinion?

2) “Baby don’t hold out. “

Some people , emphasis on some believe that this about the man in the song forcing himself on the woman and pleading her not to resist anymore so he can have his way. Forgive me for asking the question but can “hold out” be interpreted as don’t deprive us of your company by leaving this place? Doesn’t “hold “rhyme with “cold “making it a more natural choice of words? I can ask the question can I?

Speaking of holiday classics , if we are to ban Baby Its Cold Outside then we should have banned Deck The Halls a long time ago for this line:

Don we now our gay apparel
Fa-la-la, la-la-la, la-la-la

It is a  clear message  to  us to all make like RuPaul and/ or Vice Ganda and somebody somewhere thinks that is wrong so ban the song. The song was written and handed down from generation to generation because of its staying power. Gay used to only mean happy but somewhere in the 156 year existence of the song the adjective gay developed an alternate meaning. Is it the fault of Deck The Halls? Do we ban it??

Elf the movie like Baby Its Cold Outside is a Christmas staple.

I am a student of meaning and how cultures apply their own meaning to something that is not even theirs. I once wrote here in GRP how pinoys assign their own meaning to English words that one can easily look up in the dictionary.   A lot of yellow people want you to believe that Noynoy is a leader when there was no proof of him being a leader when his mother was alive. Yellow propaganda is like the Force. It “can have a strong influence on the weak-minded.”  That is what I am fighting for questioning meaning and the people who will have you believe their way is the only way lest they block you on Twitter .

 

Take this scene from the movie Bohemian Rhapsody where the band debates “meaning” with the person holding the purse.

[after listening to Bohemian Rhapsody]

Ray Foster: Bohemian…

Brian May: Rhapsody. It’s poetic.

Ray Foster: What on earth is it about? Scaramouche? Galileo? Beelzebub? And that Ismallah business?

Freddie Mercury: Bismillah.

This is the third time I am bringing up the movie Bohemian Rhapsody in GRP. In one scene the record company executive (fictional Ray Foster) wants to know the meaning of the lyrics of Bohemian Rhapsody and basically the band says why ask why? They wanted to leave it a mystery. Is there a rule somewhere that everything has to have one meaning? Did your English prof in university have the one correct interpretation of all the works of D.H. Lawrence?  If Queen wanted to do that in 1975 why are some people in 2018  so sure about a song written in 1944 to the point that they decided you shouldn’t hear it??

A four year old article in the BBC attempted to tackle the question how often do men think about sex?  The notion going around at the time was every 7 seconds. Go read the article and the answer varies from once a day to seven times a day. They even admit to the imperfections of their study. Still let us analyze the so called lyrics of another classic that I am sure somebody else has decided to ban at one time or another. TUTTI FRUTTI by Little Richard. One of rock and rolls pioneers.

Bop bopa-a-lu a whop bam boo
Tutti frutti, oh Rudy
Tutti frutti, woo
Tutti frutti, oh Rudy (3x)

A whop bop-a-lu a whop bam boo
Got a girl named Sue, she knows just what to do
I got a girl named Sue, she knows just what to do
She rock to the east, she rocks to the west
But she’s the girl that I know best
Tutti frutti, oh Rudy
Tutti frutti, woo
Tutti frutti, oh Rudy (3x)

A whop bop-a-lu a whop bam boo
Got a girl named Daisy, she almost drives me crazy
I got a girl named Daisy, she almost drives me crazy
She knows how to love me, yes indeed
Boy, you don’t know what you’re doin’ to me
Tutti frutti, oh Rudy
Tutti frutti, woo
Tutti frutti, oh Rudy (3x)
A whop bop-a-lu a whop bam boo

lyrics from a general Google search

You may notice there are a lot of made up words. There is very general talk about being driven crazy and knowing what to do. The Fine Young Cannibals had a hit in 1989 about being driven crazy.  Was it the same thing? Will we ever know for sure ? What is wrong about a song about something that happens all the time? If it is true that thoughts of a sexual nature really occur at least once a day you can read that meaning into anything and who are some people to censor it?

Keep in mind Tutti Frutti  came out in 1957 where it was only a song on the radio. You knew very little about anybody whose music you enjoyed on the radio. Richard Wayne Penniman or “Little ” to his friends did end up living a colorful life and is still living it. He came from a religious family and his life lead him to places and situations that religion rarely prescribes. You heard that life is a journey? Little Richard’s journey is truly fascinating . We are all unique and so we will bring our unique interpretation to things that are open for interpretation.

“The movies belong to the people. You make them and you put them out there. For me, I love the process of making films. For me, my favorite film is always my next one.”

Denzel Washington talking about all the movies that he has been in.

“Its the way it should be now…..”

We all have different opinions and go into something with different mindsets and expectations. Denzel basically goes on to say that he may not have liked a particular movie but it landed really well with someone else and who is he to deprive that person of that pleasure? There is a reason Baskin Robbins has 31 flavors. The town elders from Footloose   want you to believe that there is only one flavor. The flavor they want.

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About Gogs

Putting a very sharp needle into the balloon known as Pinoy Pride since 2012.

10 Comments on “So Now A Christmas Song Is Really Talking About Date Rape”

  1. Song writing is an Art…for most of us who cannot understand art…we take the contents of the song literally. Some songs have obvious sexual connotations. Some songs have hidden sexual connotations. Some songs are nonsense…

    If you are a “Puritan minded” person. You will be outraged on songs that connote something about sex. I believe, it also depends on the listener. You can interpret any lyric or any rhyme, by your state of mind.
    If you are always conscious about sex…then, every song, every lyric, every rhyme, can connote something about sex.

    It is a season to be jolly…enjoy all the Christmas songs…Merry Christmas in advance ! Maligayang Pasko at Masaganang Bagong Taon !

  2. People see what they want to see, hear what they want to hear. Thats how perception works. Now thats all well and dandy, but shit starts when you start imposing your subjective views on other people, and not by good old healthy discourse.
    I love you pointed out that man amongst men rick “khan” montalban sang this. You made my day

    1. ” We are one big happy fleet!”

      ” let them eat static”

      “He tasks me. He tasks me, and I shall have him. I’ll chase him round the Moons of Nibia and round the Antares Maelstrom and round Perdition’s flames before I give him up! [No one responds.] Prepare to alter course.”

  3. People should also remember that words and meanings change over time. “Gay” for example just meant happy many years ago. Today, you can’t say or hear the word without thinking of a homosexual. Also, one funny Batman comic panel saw Robin mention a “boner.” But is that the boner we all think of today? The context of the song is so different, and so the meaning would be different for people in those times.

    Ricardo Montalban as a singer I think happened in Fantasy Island, though I actually don’t recall any scenes at all.

    1. Case in point – the classic Disney number “The Three Caballeros” where Donald Duck hangs out with his Latino “birds of a feather”, the Mexican rooster Panchito and the Brazilian parrot Jose. The original song begins with these immortal lines…

      “We’re three caballeros,
      Three gay caballeros…”

      In recent iterations, the word “gay” is rewritten as “brave” or dropped entirely, so in a recent DuckTales (2018) episode, it goes something like this….

      “We’re three caballeros,
      Yes, three caballeros!!!”

      Apparently the good folks at Disney are aware of how the word “gay” may raise malicious snickers among today’s kids, but…

  4. There was an item in my draft that ended up on the cutting room floor though it is still related. I am talking about the NFL team in Washington, D.C. They have had their nickname since 1933. I first heard of the controversy in the mid 80s. The uproar is not as audible as it was 3-4 years ago. I am not making light of the issue but facts are the facts. That nickname ( starts with an “R”) has been there for 85 years and the call for political correctness has not been successful in the last few decades. The owner Daniel Snyder stuck to his guns even if he stands to make more money with a nickname and logo change. He will not change the name of the team that has been there decades before he was born. Another example of climate change I guess.

  5. Dave Tieff
    December 5 at 9:09 PM ·
    YouTube
    If you’re offended by “Baby It’s Cold Outside” you’re going to have a tough go of it in life. And so are your kids.

    First, you are completely ignoring the fact that the song is 74 years old–when women were ladies and men were gentlemen.

    Her “protest” was typical of a way a lady would speak to a man instead of just downing some drinks and hopping into bed with him.
    No one seems offended by those kinda lyrics when you hear them on the radio ALL YEAR LONG.
    Men actually had to court women back in those days, a subtle dance that for both men and women no longer exists. Sad but true.

    Secondly, “what’s in this drink?” does not imply that she was roofied, or at least it didn’t in 1944. You don’t need to be a historian to piece that puzzle together.

    She’s sarcastically blaming her indecision on her drink, which again, came with the times. Is that not obvious?

    Should we stop watching The Wizard of Oz because when they fall asleep in the poppy fields that means Dorothy is on heroin?

    Moreover, what are you worried is going to happen?? That people will hear this song, completely misinterpret the lyrics (as you obviously have) and then decide to go date rape someone?

    I’d like to see the #metoo movement taken SERIOUSLY. Uproar over a holiday song, which CLEARLY was not about abuse, has the opposite effect.

    If you were sexually abused, my heart goes out to you, but aren’t we surrounded my far more obvious and offensive material on a daily basis that should be drawing the attention? Is this really the right battle to fight?

    Or maybe you’re worried about your children and what they will think when they hear it? Gee, maybe it’s the perfect teachable moment to actually sit down and have a conversation with your child about how men and women USED to be. Most notably, NOT offended by everything fucking thing that crossed their path.

    Yes, I agree, Rudolph gets bullied in the animated version of “Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer.” Aaaaaaand?? Wasn’t that the point of the whole fucking story!!??

    It’s the ultimate story of redemption and turning the other cheek and doing what you gotta do in the face of adversity.
    He was called a bunch of names by his peers but shook it off and guided Santa’s sleigh anyway–in the fog no less!
    Is there a better or more stoic way to flip a red nosed middle finger at some jealous reindeer?

    What if Rudolph was just offended and cried and sulked off and went to his room and that was the end of the story? A really shitty story, that’s what.

    Last but not least, have you seen violent video games or watched modern TV or listened to modern radio?
    And you’re still worried about a 74 year old Christmas song? Have you lost your fucking mind!?

    If after reading this you’re still offended by Rudolph and Dean Martin, good. BE OFFENDED.

    But please don’t imply that the rest of us lack morals or values or good judgement, especially when it comes to parenting.

    If you want to raise your kids to be hyper sensitive and offended at every little thing that they might not understand or agree with, have at it.

    Me and my kids will be busy watching Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer and listening to “Baby It’s Cold Outside” and waiting for Santa to come down the chimney.

    ….or does Santa encourage breaking and entering?

    I can’t keep up.

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