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The Most Offensive Christmas Song Ever

Christmas is almost upon us, and while other sites present lists of their favorite Christmas songs, we here at YDKF are going in a different direction. We’re going to present to you the most offensive Christmas song ever. Now, some songs go the route of Mr. Hankey the Christmas Poo, or Merry F*cking Christmas, pushing boundaries just for the sake of it. We generally receive them as humorous, self-aware smut.  This song, however, is much more insidious than that, a fact which adds to its filthy nature. It presents itself as a simple, harmless little Christmas standard. We know differently, though. It’s not a song about Christmas; it’s a song about rape. Worse yet, it’s a blueprint. They might as well call it “How to Rape a Woman and Make Her Think It Was Her Choice” instead of “Baby, It’s Cold Outside”.

For those of you unfamiliar with the song, it’s essentially a discourse between a woman trying to leave and a man trying to keep her from doing so. We’ll put the man’s lyrics in bold as we look at this instructional guide to forced entry.

It starts off innocently:

I really can’t stay – Baby it’s cold outside
I’ve got to go away – Baby it’s cold outside
This evening has been – Been hoping that you’d drop in
So very nice – I’ll hold your hands, they’re just like ice

The woman attempts to leave, but the man has other plans. The message in the first two lines? Weather can be an excellent excuse to begin predatory nature. “Well, officer, did you see that storm? I couldn’t possibly have let her leave. It was for her own safety, really.” The man is even sly enough not to seek her out. He allows the bait to come to him, just hoping she’d drop in, and then secures her, gripping her hands with that same weather-based excuse. The prey is in the trap, and part of her knows it:

My mother will start to worry – Beautiful, what’s your hurry
My father will be pacing the floor – Listen to the fireplace roar
So really I’d better scurry – Beautiful, please don’t hurry
Well Maybe just a half a drink more – Put some music on while I pour

Afraid to be bold, she begins to issue subtle warnings. Her mother.  Her father.  Both will be aware of her absence and clearly concerned. Any attention drawn while detaining her would clearly lead them to this man and his home. This, however, doesn’t deter him. He calls her bluff. Should anyone come looking, that fireplace will surely drown out the sound of her screams. If it doesn’t? Well, once she acquiesces to another drink, the twin tools of the roofie he slips into it and the music she’s about to put on will provide him with ample coverage for his actions.

The neighbors might think – Baby, it’s bad out there
Say, what’s in this drink – No cabs to be had out there

What’s in this drink? That would be rohypnol. Also, don’t bother calling for a cab. I’ve cut the phone line.

I wish I knew how – Your eyes are like starlight now
To break this spell – I’ll take your hat, your hair looks swell

Translation: Your eyes are starting to gloss over. Excellent. Let me get a good look at the hair I’m going to be tossing you around by later.

I ought to say no, no, no, sir – Mind if I move a little closer
At least I’m gonna say that I tried – What’s the sense in hurting my pride
I really can’t stay – Baby don’t hold out
Ahh, but it’s cold outside

He senses that he has her, but clearly he has some sense of compunction, as he asks for permission to move things further. After all, if he has to take her against her will, his masculinity suffers. For her part, she acknowledges that her efforts may be futile. She can say that she tried to leave; she senses, however, that may not be an option any longer.

I simply must go – Baby, it’s cold outside
The answer is no – Ooh baby, it’s cold outside
This welcome has been – I’m lucky that you dropped in
So nice and warm — Look out the window at that storm

His conscience eats at him as she refuses him, but there’s the weather again, such a delightfully convenient scapegoat. He reminds himself: she came to him. It was fortune that led her into his foyer, and it is fate that should determine where things go. Look out that window at the storm, indeed. It may well be the last thing you see.

My sister will be suspicious – Man, your lips look so delicious
My brother will be there at the door – Waves upon a tropical shore
My maiden aunt’s mind is vicious – Gosh your lips look delicious
Well maybe just a half a drink more – Never such a blizzard before

More warnings on her part. There will be others searching for him, but her threats are futile. He’s beyond stopping. He wants to consume her. Again she ever so slightly acquiesces, giving him moral justification. Besides, it’s so cold outside, and he could keep her so warm.

I’ve got to go home – Oh, baby, you’ll freeze out there
Say, lend me your comb – It’s up to your knees out there

Go home? Oh, my dear, I think not. You won’t get ten feet before I’m on you and you’re down on your knees begging for forgiveness. As far as me proffering some utensil you can use to attack me? Good luck.

You’ve really been grand – Your eyes are like starlight now
But don’t you see – How can you do this thing to me

She attempts to flatter him, but by now he’s immune to it. She’s fading as the rohypnol takes control. Again he blames her. It’s not his fault, this thing that’s about to happen. She did it. She caused it. The victim will be blamed.

There’s bound to be talk tomorrow – Making my life long sorrow
At least there will be plenty implied – If you caught pneumonia and died
I really can’t stay – Get over that old out
Ahh, but it’s cold outside

Tomorrow, they’ll call the police. Tomorrow, he may regret it. Tomorrow, she may not even wake to a new day. Pneumonia can be faked, right?  If not, there will be something else.  People die in the snow all the time. Whatever happens, he’ll get over it. He has to. This is his only option. He has no other choice.

And there you have it. The woman never stands a chance. I’m not sure who the sick bastard is who wrote this song, but I cringe whenever it comes on around Christmas time. It’s been covered countless times. Worst of all, perhaps, was its appearance in the movie Elf as the predatory Will Ferrell sneaks into the shower to sing it with Zooey Deschanel. Were it not a busy department store, she may have discovered just how cold Buddy the Elf truly could be. I can only imagine how many women have had the same realization forced on them by men prevaricating with the weather and a simple glass of egg nog. Hopefully, if we can spread word about this awful song, there won’t be many more.

Dr. Walter Hutcherson is a professor of music and criminal studies at the University of Montana.


  1. Steve says:

    Dear Dr. Walter Hutcherson,

    I read your article with great interest. I am, sadly, a scholar of music in the antipodes, where people celebrate Christmas in little-known ways.

    Sadly, until you’ve experienced the Australian tradition of analingus with grandma while she sits on a red hot barbecue, with the entire family singing Joy ToThe World in two parts (it’s strangely 10 bars long and is contrapuntally palindromic – its descant is the tune backwards against itself) you haven’t actually experienced the Joy Of Christmas as Jesus practiced it with Mary, Judas, Simon the donkey rustler and Ahmed the “Happy Ending” masseur.

    So I hope that you have a lovely Christmas, and think of me as I celebrate in the traditional Australian way, as my forebears have for centuries.

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