Hogan's Alley

Friday, December 23, 2005

T'was The Night Before Christmas - Brooklyn Version

Several years ago the very funny Rob Bartlett, the perenial contributor to the Imus In The Morning Show, developed a recurring character. His name was Sal Monella, a Brooklyn guy who would comment on current affairs. One year, at Christmas time, he wrote and performed a parody of Clement Moore's "Night Before Christmas". I remember hearing it that first time live. It was hillarious and brilliantly delivered. It became a classic and Bartlett would reprise it at the Holiday season.

I received a copy today in a chain email. Here it is. It deserves to be read in your best Brooklyneese.

Sal Monella's 'A Child's Christmas in Brooklyn'
Rob Bartlett

Twas the night before Christmas in Sheepshead Bay
The kids was asleep, waitin' for the big day
The Stockings were hung by the furnace with care
In hopes that by morning, they would all still be there

Me and gal were gettin' ready for bed
I wore pajamas she had rollers on her head
When up on the roof, I heard this big crash
Thought it was a burglar, I was gonna kick ass

Went out on the fire escape, looked up in the sky,
And what did I see? This freakin' fat guy
With a red suit and boots that came up to his knees
In the moonlight he looked just like Dom Deluise

He had this big sled pulled by these reindeer
He called one of them 'Dancer' so I assumed he was queer
As he crept off the roof it became clear to me
That this guy was lookin' to steal my TV

Cos' over his shoulder he had a big sack
He came down the stairs, while I planned my attack
I waited a second, 'till the time it seemed ripe
And smacked him in the head...badda bing wit a pipe

He fell to the floor wit a groan and a thud
I was kinda surprised I didn't see blood
Instead he rolled over looked me right in the eye
When I saw who I hit I nearly started to cry

I said 'Ay yo, Santa, I'm sorry, aright?'
"Not for nuthin'" he said, "but this just ain't my night"
"I got lost in the Bronx, I ran over some nuns...
"Had a near miss by Kennedy...Rudolph's got the runs
"I'm out all freakin' night and I'm bustin' my hump
"But I can't continue now, not with this bump
"So do me a favor and be a real pal...take over for me, you be Santa Claus, Sal"

I said "I'm from Brooklyn...I ain't right for the part"
But he told me that Santa Claus... 'Comes from the heart'.
He made me an offer I couldn't refuse: Stop at every house...except for the Jews
I got in the boots and stepped onto the sleigh
Wondering why reindeers all smelled that way

That night I was Santa bringin' kids joy and bliss
And if you don't believe me, then yo' jingle this
Since then I been wit him every year in the cold
Ridin' shotgun with Santa...cos' he's fat and he's old

I'm his number one helper I been deputized
So on this Christmas Eve, don't you be surprised
If you hear a voice say really loud and abrupt
'Merry Christmas to all...thanks a lot...shut up'.

UPDATE: A recording of Rob performing this piece is available at his website. The above version proves to be a slightly sanitized one.