The Mystery Of My Favorite Christmas Song

Holidailies 2015

The Mystery Of

My Favorite Christmas Song

I love Christmas songs- I pull out the music on Thanksgiving and I’ve got it going on until Christmas Night

Christmas movies are great, but the music?

That’s the most important part of the festivities- I can do without the the tree, but I must have the tunes.


When I was a child I only learned part of a song that I say on every single holiday that came up, though I rattled it off more during Christmas.

Nobody in my family knew where I learned it and why I thought it was a holiday song- so it was an earworm.

Worse yet, I only knew one line and I would sing that one line over and over and the words weren’t even in English.

I’d get grilled about where I heard it, I guess the reasoning was if they knew the song title and the rest of the lyrics the mystery would be solved and it wouldn’t make everyone crazy when I sang :

Caput apri defero
Reddens laudes Domino

So it was years and years later when I was at a friend’s house and up comes THE SONG on their CD player that I tortured everyone with at Christmas, Birthdays, Funerals and Dinner parties.

It was a real song.

The mystery remains though, where I heard it.

It’s a nice mystery, a Christmas mystery and those kinds of mysteries are fun when you just let them be.

So I don’t put too much thought into solving the question.

Now that I know the entire song I like to sing it with as much joy and gusto as I can. If I’m not feeling it when I start, I always end up getting caught in the moment and I feel it  to my bones once I get going…

And here it is:

Boar’s Head ( Lyrics )

The boar’s head in hand bring I, (Or: The boar’s head in hand bear I,)
Bedeck’d with bays and rosemary.
And I pray you, my masters, be merry (Or: And I pray you, my masters, merry be)
Quod estes in convivio (Translation: As many as are in the feast)

Caput apri defero (Translation: The boar’s head I offer)
Reddens laudes Domino (Translation: Giving praises to the Lord)

The boar’s head, as I understand,
Is the rarest dish in all this land,
Which thus bedeck’d with a gay garland
Let us servire cantico. (Translation: Let us serve with a song)


Our steward hath provided this
In honour of the King of Bliss;
Which on this day to be served is
In Reginensi atrio. (Translation: In the hall of Queen’s [College, Oxford])

The Boar’s Head Carol is a macaronic 15th century English Christmas carol that describes the ancient tradition of sacrificing a boar and presenting its head at a Yuletide feast. Of the several extant versions of the carol, the one most usually performed today is based on a version published in 1521 in Wynkyn de Worde’s Christmasse Carolles.

( Wikipedia)

No Rest For The Wicked

Take Care

When you’re unwell, do you allow others to take care of you, or do you prefer to soldier on alone? What does it take for you to ask for help?


When I was three and drank kerosene, she took care of me. When I got bit by bugs, caught the cold or the flu I hardly knew I was ill.

I’m talking about my maternal Grandmother.

She was solid, nothing rattled her and if you weren’t doing well it never entered your head for a minute that you would not be ok.


The problem started after my parents moved us to the mainland from Hawaii and my Grandparent’s house.

 I was convinced every single time I took ill or got hurt that it would not end well for me.

I remember right after we moved to Seattle I caught a flu bug and my Dad’s parents came over to sit with me because it was the week before Christmas and they had shopping to do.

They set me up on the couch, brought me stuff to drink, gave me some comic books and sat with me in the living room and we watched tv.

After a bit I started to get nervous because they were hovering around and feeling my forehead.

My Grandfather’s face was twisted with worry and concern, which looking back on it now is touching.

I was almost five and went from being a tree climbing smart alec to a bedridden invalid who wouldn’t say a word and when I did I threw up.

And then the thought came out of nowhere.

I was going to die.

That’s what was going on, that’s why they were there watching over me like they were worried something was going to break into the house and snatch me away.

I threw up again into the bucket they had put next to the couch and then I threw myself off of the couch and ran screaming to my bedroom.

I slammed the door shut behind me and I slid myself under my bed and started to scream ” Save me! Save me! I’m dieing!”


So over the years when I got sick and someone would be there to try to take care of me, I’d look into their faces and think, ” Oh God. I am in SO much trouble here.”

So I stopped asking for help and kept to myself when I was ill.

I think my family was relieved considering my reaction to them when they tried to help me.

After all, when you look into someone’s face when you’re trying to help them and they look back at you like you’re some crazed killer from a horror film, the urge to stick that person on an iceberg and let them float off to their reward probably crawls into your head at some point.


So now I’m a lot older and over the years I’ve taken care of husband and kids when they were hurt or ill and I was pretty good at it.

They seemed to have a great amount  of confidence in my abilities to look out for them and help them get well- which I fancy is something I learned from my Grandmother.

The thing of it is, I hardly ever get sick and when I do I take to my bed and sleep it off.

I pretty much take care of myself on those days.

I guess, after all these years I still don’t think anyone can take care of me when I’m sick or hurt the way my maternal Grandmother did.

Thinking back on it, maybe after we moved away from Hawaii it was my way of not letting anyone take her place.

Or maybe I was and still am that morbid little  kid who thinks she’s going to die every time her nose runs.

Tough call.