I admit I don’t know too many Christmas songs. I mean, I can recognise the tunes of quite a few, but there are very few of whom I know the lyrics. This is on account of us mainly trolling our school music teacher Samson when he would teach us these songs at this time of the year every year. For example, one year I remember we would sing all songs replacing keywords with “moTTe” (egg). “Joy to the world, the moTTe has come” etc.
So two songs whose lyrics I sort of know (primarily because the wife knows their lyrics well, and also because the daughter sings well), are Jingle Bells and Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer. And the two fundamentally contradict.
Dashing through the snow
In a one-horse open sleigh
Over the fields we go
Laughing all the way
So it’s a “one-horse open sleigh”, which suggests that Santa travels on a sleigh which is pulled by one animal, which happens to be a horse.
Now, consider the lyrics of the other song that I know:
Then one foggy Christmas Eve,
Santa came to say,
Rudolph with your nose so bright,
Won’t you guide my sleigh tonight
So this suggests that it is Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer who pulls the sleigh?
Isn’t there a fundamental contradiction in here? Is it the horse that pulls the sleigh or is it the reindeer? It’s extremely confusing!
I have only one explanation to this – it’s a one-horse sleigh that Rudolph the Reindeer “guides”. So you can think of Santa sitting on a sleigh that is pulled by a horse, with the reindeer travelling along as a guide of sorts (since the horse doesn’t know its way around Scandinavia).
What’s your explanation of it?
And while we are at it, wish you a Merry Christmas!