Five O'Clock Somewhere

Welcome to Five O'Clock Somewhere, where it doesn't matter what time zone you're in; it's five o'clock somewhere. We'll look at rural life, especially as it happens in Rio Arriba County, New Mexico, cats, sailing (particularly Etchells racing yachts), and bits of grammar and Victorian poetry.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Poetry Corner: Frank Loesser

Oh, baby, it’s cold outside

The original plan for today was that I would stay up at Five O’Clock Somewhere and keep the home fire burning, while Gerald and Pat went to Albuquerque to pick up Gerald’s friends and a few things we had forgotten or that weren’t available in the Chama Valley.

Part of the plan went well. They took off relatively early in the morning, leaving me to tend the fire. The fireplace needs relatively little tending. Unlike a conventional fireplace, this one draws air for combustion from outside the house, so it doesn’t suck warm air up the chimney. It also has a duct system that draws indoor air in beneath the firebox and sends it out above. There’s a fan that accelerates the process, but even when the power is out, convection sends a lot of air through the system, heating the room nicely.

Tending the fireplace is easy. A small log (6-8 inches in diameter) will last about an hour and a half. I put the log in. About 45 minutes later, I turn it over. About 45 minutes after that, I turn it over again and put a new one on top. That’s enough when it’s just me and the cat, sitting on the sofa in front of the fire.

Other parts of today’s plan didn’t go so well. In particular, the reason Pat and Gerald took the journey to Albuquerque in the first place was to pick up two of Gerald’s friends who were to spend a couple of days with us at Five O’Clock Somewhere. We made a special effort to clean the house, and we laid on an extra-large turkey to serve up.

Then, after all of the extra effort, including a lot of driving, especially on Gerald’s part, the friends changed their plans. Because of a lack of communication (have I mentioned that Pat needs to get his own cell phone?), Pat left Albuquerque headed north with the expectation that Gerald and his friends would be following. As it turns out, when Gerald learned that his friends weren’t coming north after all, he had no way to let Pat know. He started to head north on his own, but he encountered a highway blockage and nasty weather, so he ended up deciding to stay in Albuquerque.

Meanwhile, Dulce and I were enjoying the warm fire and being inside while the snow was coming down outside. I was working on Murder at the Little Theater, trying to get something that at least resembles a finished novel by the end of December. Dulce was snoozing in a chair nearby, enjoying the warmth of the fire. I had my iTunes holiday playlist going on my laptop.

When Pat came in, dusted with snow, which was falling thickly at that point, and tracking packed snow, my iTunes was playing Petula Clark and Rod Mckuen singing “Baby It’s Cold Outside.” It just seemed like the right song for the moment. Petula’s saying she has to get on her way home, but Rod is countering everything she says.

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
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

The neighbors might think - Baby, it's bad out there
Say, what's in this drink - No cabs to be had out there
I wish I knew how - Your eyes are like starlight now
To break this spell - I'll take your hat, your hair looks swell
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

C'mon baby

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
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

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

Baby it's cold outside

Brr its cold...
It's cold out there
Cant you stay awhile longer baby
Well... I really shouldn't... alright

Make it worth your while baby
Ahh, do that again...

The giggling at the end makes this rendition especially fun.

Thanks to for the words.

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