jetsetgreen

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Workers of the World Unite

Almost ten years ago I was working at Barnes and Noble. One night, after three weeks of constant and unending Christmas music, we, the workers, united and annoyed, decided to experiment. We put Mele Kalikimaka (you know, is the thing to say on a bright Hawaiian Christmas Day) onto the overhead CD player and put it on repeat. We were mostly worried that our skinny manager would notice. He didn’t. I think the song had gone on and on for two hours before we had a customer approach the info desk. “Hey, I think this song has repeated twice now.” “Oh, thank you, we’ll take care of it.” No one else noticed for the rest of the night.

Mele kalikimaka is the thing to say on a bright hawaiian christmas day that’s the island greeting that we send to you from the land where palm trees sway here we know that christmas will be green and bright the sun will shine by day and all the stars at nightMele kalikimaka is hawaii’s way to say merry christmas to you Mele kalikimaka is the thing to say on a bright hawaiian christmas day that’s the island greeting that we send to you from the land where palm trees sway here we know that christmas will be green and bright the sun will shine by day and all the stars at night Mele kalikimaka is hawaii’s way to say merry christmas to you Mele kalikimaka is the thing to say on a bright hawaiian christmas day that’s the island greeting that we send to you from the land where palm trees sway here we know that christmas will be green and bright the sun will shine by day and all the stars at night Mele kalikimaka is hawaii’s way to say merry christmas to you Mele kalikimaka is the thing to say on a bright hawaiian christmas day that’s the island greeting that we send to you from the land where palm trees sway here we know that christmas will be green and bright the sun will shine by day and all the stars at nightMele kalikimaka is hawaii’s way to say merry christmas to you Mele kalikimaka is the thing to say on a bright hawaiian christmas day that’s the island greeting that we send to you from the land where palm trees sway here we know that christmas will be green and bright the sun will shine by day and all the stars at nightMele kalikimaka is hawaii’s way to say merry christmas to you

20 comments:

~j. said...

[insert "Mary, Did You Know?" joke here]

BowlerGirl said...

I seriously almost laughed myself right out of my chair at work. I'm currently on hold with a very large pharmacy that ends with ummm..... *$#@greens. I have been listening to Christmas musak since November for over 7 hours a day.

So I figure that I have listened to about 200 hours of Christmas music so far. Let it be a very Merry Christmas and definately Let it snow, Let it snow, Let it snow!

Bek said...

Carina--I can't belive that the people that homeschooled their kids at the store or the people who did very special things with very special books in the bathrooms didn't notice......

I worked their the same time...actually I left in July before that Christmas, so maybe I just missed you. I DO know the skinny manager you are speaking of (who liked to wear white jeans on his casual days). Was Topher a manager there when you were there?

GREAT POST. Of all the songs to put on repeat....Mele Karikimaka. Hawaiian's HATE that song (or at least the ones in our ward that had a fit when the primary wanted to sing it for the Christmas party...)

Azúcar said...

I did not work under Topher. He was but a lowly bookseller when I started.

Oh Duane, Duane. I look back with such fond memories.

BG- After so many years of listening to Christmas music for eight to ten hours a day, for two months straight, I'm only now able to stand it. And by stand it I mean maybe two or three songs and then that's it.

Jenny: Best pantomime in a song EVER.

Rachel said...

HILARIOUS!

Bek said...

Duane and DENISE!!! Yikes.

My favorite Christmas song is "Oh What a Night" by Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons. When I worked at Gap--that was the only one that didn't make me want to kill myself. Now when I hear it, I have the overwhelming urge to fold shirts and try to sell someone Polar Fleece.

Azúcar said...

Oh Gap and BR are the worst! At BR we were given only one CD a month to listen to. After that we were supposed to throw them away. We kept ours: if you listened to the same hour of music repeated for 10 hours a day for 30 days in a row you'd want to kill customers. So, every once in a while one of the managers would throw in a two months ago's CD and we would breath a sigh of relief.

At least we could change some of the CDs at the bookstores during the holidays. Other times of year were great because there would be all kinds of things to listen to.

Nothing compares to working at Galaxy Diner. Piano Man, Greased Lightening, all multiple times a day for TWO years. I HATE THOSE SONGS.

~j. said...

You worked at Galaxy??

Azúcar said...

GF, I was one of the original servers. I opened that store.

And then You YAHOOs couldn't stop playing Greased Lightening so I left.

Bek said...

Gap had the same policy. One CD. Grrrrr.

When I worked at B&N I worked in the music department and they let me put in different CD's. Of course, Topher was the manager....

Galaxy opened about 5 minutes before I left on my mission. There was no BR when I left Prove. The snob mall was but a dream in some developers mind.

My freshman year of the BY I worked at Frontier Pies. I brought home old pies for a dollar each. I used them as bribes for the boys in my ward to do things like fix my 1973 Chevy Impala and give me rides to campus. No music in that place.

Lisa and I worked at the Underground. On very special nights we had "live music", or, every band in Provo. The good ones and the crappy ones.

Emmie said...

At the car dealership where lately I worked they had this strange satellite station that played one Christmas song (and it was usually Maria Carey singing it), followed by a regular song (again, usually Maria Carey). I was told this was to make both Christians and non-Christians happy. But what about Christians who hate Maria Carey?

Emmie said...

And ever since I read your post this morning, I can't get Mele Kalikimaka out of my head. Thanks a lot.

Kiki said...

It was a sad day in my life when I found out that the Galaxy diner had closed. BEST OREO SHAKES EVER!!! (with fries)

Last week, I went with my mom to the progressive dinner that the ladies at church had. I said, "Okay, mom. I won't play any Tori CDs. What do you want to listen to?" She answered, "Christmas music!" I squealed, "OH! I think I have some." Someone had sent me a seemingly random Christmas CD that I'd neither looked at nor listened to before adding it to the CD book in my car. Song 1 was okay. I don't remember song 2. Song 3...Tori Amos!!! Now I know why this was sent to me. Almost everything else was absolutely horrible. "Merry Christmas From the Family" by Jill Sobule has to be the most awful and hilarious Christmas song ever written. I was listening to it and my mom was cringing. But as I started laughing hysterically at the words to the song, my mom listened up. We ended up listening to it 7 times that night. For pure entertainment, you must listen to this song.

Kiki said...

Here are the lyrics to that song. On this album I have, You Sleigh Me, it's sung by someone who sounds like a drunk mix of Sheryl Crow and that chick who sung for the Bangles.

Kiki said...

SUNG?! She done sung for the Bangles!

Merry Christmas from a hick who ain't never learnt proper Anglish.

Azúcar said...

Emmie, I don't know what you're talking about. Everybody loves Mariah Carey. Everybody. Now, take a long hard look in the mirror and accept the fact that you love her too.

Dear Carrie, the recipe for the Oreo shakes is easy. Nearly pulverize oreos in a food processor. Use three to four large scoops of hard vanilla ice cream, a little milk, add 1/3 c of oreo crumbles, more to taste. Add more milk if the shake will not blend. The secret to the best recipes is the simplicity of fresh ingredients.
I can't help you with the battered fries, they were really good. Magelby's has similar fries. Iceberg Drive-In has fries that are different, but just as good. I don't eat fries often (maybe a couple times a year) but when I do, they are Iceberg.

Emmie said...

I hate Mariah so much I spelled her name wrong out of spite.

Azúcar said...

Me thinks you do protest too much. Perhaps you haven't seen Glitter? It's the comedy gem of the new millenium. A rental might be necessary, post haste!

christopher clark said...

I just want to thank you for reminding me of one of my favorite holiday B&N memories. I remember laying on the floor behind the cashwrap and holding my gut. I was working in the music department at the time, and I remember that night very well. Do you remember when we put on the CD with the cats meowing all the Christmas songs?

Azúcar said...

I DO. Oh the things we could get away with because Duane never noticed.