Christmas time in, what, 1984? We’re at the house that my maternal grandmother rented in High Ridge right next to the firehouse. My brother and I are lying on the floor watching MTV because my grandmother had cable, and we could watch MTV which would have been important to a twelve-year-old at the time. We would have been visiting on a weekend, as we were still living with my aunt in St. Charles at the time. The television is a big console unit that would be in our trailer too soon as my grandmother would pass away in a year or so.
But this Christmas song comes on. A science fiction sounding Christmas song.
We’re lying on the floor, and as it finishes up, my brother and I turn to each other and say, “Whoa.”
It’s Mannheim Steamroller’s “Deck the Halls” from the then-new Christmas album. I liked it so much that I bought it on audiocassette whilst I was in college; it would have been the first Christmas album I bought.
As our latest inexpensive bookshelf system failed, again, after six or seven months of playing records, I’m not spinning platters for a second year in a row. I’m reduced to listening to songs via Bluetooth. Somewhere in the recent decades, my beautiful wife spent time ripping audiocassettes to MP3 files, so I have a copy of my old tape on my phone now, and I listened to it the other night and remembered how I was introduced to Mannheim Steamroller.
So I asked my brother if he remembered it.
He did not.
So many of the things I remember, I am unsure if they actually happened like that or not. And more and more, nobody can tell me differently.
And as I’m getting older, my wife or increasingly my children ask me if I remember some incident that seemed more important to them than to me, and I cannot. So I am a little gratified that other people my age–namely, my brother–cannot remember some things, too.
As long as it actually happened. I suppose it would be no consolation if it didn’t and I was just recalling it wholesale.
At any rate, I am thinking of reviewing some Christmas “albums” that I have in non-record format as the posts about the Christmas albums are popular, especially this time of year.