The Economic Downturn Holiday Songbook!

Does the recession have you down? Then maybe these revisions of classic Christmas songs will bring you cheer!

Music hath charms, so English poet William Congreve said it in 1697, to soothe the savage breast, to soften rocks, or bend a knotted oak. I don’t know about you, but given the recent official announcement of a recession (duh), my nerves have been rather like a knotted oak lately, so they could certainly use a good healthy bending. And let’s put things in perspective: when Congreve wrote those famous words, his own country had just reached an all-time high budget deficit of 16 million pounds, Scotland was in the middle of a crippling famine and new laws had to be enacted just to figure out how to finance the needs of the Royal Family. Good sir William took the time to remind the citizenry of his day how to calm themselves with a little therapeutic music, and lo and behold they got through the bad times eventually. Now, I lay no claim to being a bona fide poet, nor have I fashioned a quotation that will be remembered for centuries to come (unless you count "no Hannah Montana until you finish your homework," which, something tells me, is not original to me), but the least I could do is try and help us sing our way through the challenging events of our day. Feel free to join in.

SONG #1

(SUNG TO THE TUNE OF "WINTER WONDERLAND")

New home sales, they are dropping

No one feels like going shopping

It is awful, it’s true

But what can you do

Be happy that you’re breathing and alive

No one has any money

It is not even funny

Your friends are all broke

But life is a joke

Be happy that you’re breathing and alive

In a year the worst will sure be over

We’ll be back and strong and on our feet

Unless we’re second place by then to China

But being number two is just as sweet

Suck it up, we will manage

We’ll repair all the damage

We’re just in a slump

It’s just a speed bump

Be happy that you’re breathing and alive

SONG #2

(SUNG TO THE TUNE OF "JINGLE BELLS")

Dashing through the mall

On a budget that is tight

Santa will not be

So generous tonight

Maxed out all my cards

On food and rent, I’m poor

No one’s getting presents that are fancy anymore

Oh

Single bills, single bills, that is all I’ve got

It’s no fun to shop these days when finances are shot

Oh

Single bills, single bills, I am spread so thin

Everything you get this year is from the bargain bin!

SONG #3

(SUNG TO THE TUNE OF "LET IT SNOW")

Oh the markets are truly frightful

I’m inclined to feel quite spiteful

But my therapist puts it so:

Let it go, let it go, let it go

The economy sure ain’t hopping

And my ventricles are popping

I want to blame someone though

Let it go, let it go, let it go

When I finally get a job

I’ll be drowning in bills and debt

I am trying hard not to sob

But how crappy can this thing get?

Unemployment is slowly rising

Everyone is now downsizing

But denial will work I know

Let it go, let it go, let it go!

*At this point, I was going to compose a holiday carol called "I Won’t Be Home For Christmas (Owing To A Lack of Disposable Income)," but it just cut too close. Instead, I decided to close with this number:

SONG #4

(SUNG TO THE TUNE OF "JINGLE BELL ROCK")

Help us out, help us out, help us Barack

We’re in a sling, so please do your thing

You are the new guy and that means so much

Do you mind being our little crutch?

Soon you’ll be, soon you’ll be in office, Barack

It’s up to you, we haven’t a clue

You have inherited quite a big mess

We expect the best!

We’re in fright time, it’s the right time

To tell us it’s okay

Sure you’re human, but things are loomin’

We need a miracle, we need it today

Hurry up, Prez-Elect, get on the stick

Solve all our problems now

We like to abdicate responsibility

So, please help us out

Won’t you help us out

Please just help us Barack!

You may want to consider getting some friends together and caroling these updated versions of the classics to your neighbors. Hey, if they like them enough, they may invite you in for some eggnog and gingerbread cookies; and goodness knows that may be the only decent meal you get until the next paycheck comes in.

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