I love the last two months of the year—especially between Thanksgiving and Christmas. As a crafter though, it’s crunch time! But while I’m busily sewing and knitting away, I’ve got a Christmas mix on my iPod on constant rotation—a lot of classics, but my favorites are from the ’80s.
When I moved to New York in 1998, the first friend I made was a girl named, Rebekah, an Austrian intern who lived on another floor in my building. Like me, she was obsessed with ’80s music—specifically British New Wave. That first December in New York, we made it our mission to find a holiday mix CD that had “Do They Know it’s Christmas?” on it.
Fun fact—according to Wikipedia, Boy George nearly didn’t make it to the recording session. Even though the producer had called him the day before to remind him, by 9 a.m. the next morning, when all of the singers were filing into the studio, Boy George hadn’t shown up yet. He was still asleep in New York! P.S., he hopped on a Concorde flight to London and was in the studio at 6 p.m. to record his portion of the song. And allegedly, Boy George also managed to snipe at George Michael for singing his part too “camp.” Oh the drama!
Anyway, Rebekah and I went into every CD store between 34th Street and Union Square, but I don’t think we ever found the song. But, we would call each other whenever we heard it on the radio. Awwwww. However, we did find “Last Christmas,” by Wham, my favorite Christmas song of all time.
Which brings me to my best New York City Christmas memory. It was mid-December and I was going back to the corner Laundromat, a block from my Queens apartment, to switch out my clothes from the washer to the dryer. About an hour from closing, it was pretty empty—just another customer and the cashier. As I started taking my wet clothes out of the washer, “Last Christmas” was playing on the radio and I was singing along in my head. Then, just as the song reached the chorus, the customer in the back of the Laundromat burst into song. This wasn’t just some humming, but full-on, I’m-singing-to-the-back-row kind of singing. It was awesome. And the cashier totally ignored him, watching a telenovela on mute in the corner. It made my day and it was soooo New York.
So what do you listen to when you are making holiday gifts? Do share!