A still frame from the 1949 MGM musical, Neptune’s Daughter. Curiously the song Baby It’s Cold Outside – which won the Academy Award for best song – replaced another, “(I’d Like to Get You on a) Slow Boat to China,” as the latter was deemed inappropriate by the Hayes Office. (MGM photo)

COLUMN: Time for one last verse as Christmas nears

Newspaper writer aims – in penultimate column – for a unique, non-controversial way to sign off

Those who have glanced at this opinion column over the past 12 years will likely have noticed it typically has a controversial bent.

As in, my writing focuses on politicians and the media and (other?) societal ills…

Truth be told, I’m not an overly political person in private life, but I’m encouraged in my position as a newspaper editor to tackle such subjects on our opinion page, and I’ve tried to take a unique look at the odd goings-on around our community and in the world that I think might need a little tweak.

Today will be different. As I prepare to wrap up my time at Peace Arch News just in time for Christmas (yes, seems I broke a time record here as editor), I would like to write this penultimate column in celebration of the season – and without hint of controversy.

And what better way to do it but in song; a duet, if you will, between you and me.

I know. Crazy, right? I haven’t heard of a print columnist doing this either. It’s about time.

And please don’t worry if you can’t sing. I’m told by my coworkers that I’ve been a little pitchy myself (at least, I think that’s what they said), and others won’t hear either of us, so long as we both have our headphones on.

Let’s start with my second-favourite holiday duet of all time – a sort of call-and-response. You go first with the phrase “I really can’t stay” and I’ll follow with the title lyrics “Baby, it’s cold outside.”

Ready? And a one, and a two, and a one-two-thr – STOP!

I’m sorry. It’s just been brought to my attention that Baby It’s Cold Outside IS considered controversial, in this modern age.

READ: ‘Baby, It’s Cold Outside’ yanked from some Canadian radio stations

Silly me. I’ve always viewed it as a quirky, romantic back-and-forth between two soon-to-be lovers in a bygone era, she playing coy and he making his interest known. Instead, it turns out, it’s to be sung with her being afraid – very afraid – and he in a menacing manner:

I’ve got to get home (Baby you’ll freeze out there)

Say lend me a comb? (It’s up to your knees out there!)

Ah… there it is. I hear it now.

But to be fair to us few remaining fans of the classic, I do hope we’re viewed as pro-victim in this time of #metoo. Seriously. At long last, society has no appetite for unwanted attention – and victimization of any sort is unacceptable. Full stop.

Of course, I also hope we are also mature enough to spot the not-so-subtle differences between mutually flirtatious courtship and unwelcome advances. Hint: For those who can’t, consider your advances unwelcome.

Regardless, in the spirit of non-controversy – and for now – I’ll give up on Baby It’s Cold Outside.

Given the limited space left, I think we’ll have just enough room to begin what is my all-time favourite holiday duet. Allow me to kick this one off:

It was Christmas Eve, babe, in the drunk tank…

Lance Peverley is the editor of Peace Arch News.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Just Posted

Peace Arch Elementary playground upgrade a go

White Rock Rotary fundraising contributes last piece for completing project

Telethon promotes Surrey Memorial Hospital COVID response funding

Entrepreneur Manjit Lit gifts Surrey Hospital Foundation, challenges others to join him

Surrey’s Johnston Heights reporting COVID-19 exposure

Fraser Health has created a new webpage listing COVID-19 cases in schools

White Rock shoots down mandatory mask motion

Coun. Scott Kristjanson asked city to prepare report on mandatory masks on public spaces

Stanley Cup win for Surrey-based NHL scout who coached in North Delta

Grant Armstrong is among 11 WHL alumni currently with Tampa Bay Lightning

105 new COVID-19 cases, 1 death as health officials urge B.C. to remember safety protocols

There are currently 1268 active cases, with 3,337 people under public health monitoring

U.S. Presidential Debate Takeaways: An acrid tone from the opening minute

Here are key takeaways from the first of three scheduled presidential debates before Election Day on Nov. 3

‘Alien invasion’: Strange webbing creeps in overnight in Agassiz,Harrison

Eerie webbing might be the result of a growth in moth population

B.C. nurses report rise in depression, anxiety, exhaustion due to pandemic

A new UBC study looks into how the COVID-19 response has impacted frontline nurses

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

National child-care plan could help Canada rebound from COVID-induced economic crisis: prof

A $2 billion investment this year could help parents during second wave of pandemic

Search suspended for Indigenous elder last seen mushroom picking in northwest B.C.

Mushroom picker Thomas (Tommy) Dennis has been missing since Sept. 16

16 MLAs retiring from B.C. politics add up to $20M in pensions: Taxpayers Federation

Taxpayers pay $4 for every dollar MLAs contribute to their pensions

Most Read