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"Christmas Smörgåsbord" Lyrics

Discussion in 'Classic Muppets' started by Dearth, Jan 4, 2016.

  1. Dearth

    Dearth Active Member

    Hi folks,

    Like every year, I spent a big chunk of December driving around town with Muppet-related Christmas CDs playing in my car.

    And once again, I found myself listening to 'Christmas Smörgåsbord' from the Green and Red Christmas album, wondering "What the heck are they saying?"

    Bear in mind, this was a burned copy of the disk that a friend had given me, so if there's a lyric sheet that comes with it, never mind reading any further.

    But I searched online and could not locate an existing set of lyrics anywhere.

    On New Year's Eve, I found myself with a little time to kill before midnight, so I listened to the song over and over, doing my best to transcribe it. I was familiar with a few of the more exotic words: hinterland, fjord, lingonberries, lutefisk, marzipan, gooseberry... but for several others, I just left question marks as placeholders.

    I did some fuzzy logic searches of what some words sounded like, and filled in a few like cloudberry and glögg (which is a traditional Swedish Christmas mulled wine) but a couple of the ones repeated in the chorus were just too unfamiliar for me to decipher.

    THEN, last night, seeking something to read to lull myself to sleep, I picked up The Book of Extraordinary Facts that my sister had given me a few Christmases ago. I randomly opened it to a section on food, flipped a couple of pages, and BOOM, in a list of interesting/disgusting foods from around the world, there was one of the words that had eluded me!

    Surströmming (Sweden): Primarily a seasonal dish in northern Sweden, this fermented herring could knock out a wolverine. Even the Swedes rarely open a can of it indoors.

    For good measure, lutefisk was also in this list, on the following page:
    Lutefisk (Sweden): It's simply fish boiled in lye. The lye gelatinizes the fish, but if it's soaked too long, the mixture starts turning into soap. The taste is actually fairly mild; the smell depends on the fish used (reportedly, cod isn't the best choice).

    Delighted by this cosmic answer to my mystery, I redoubled my efforts and began researching traditional Swedish foods until I filled in some of the other mystery words, including tunnbröd and Queens Blend preserves.

    Found on Wikipedia: "Traditionally, tunnbröd is eaten with Surströmming (fermented herring) and as dopp i grytan (lit. "dip in the pot") where the bread is soaked in the stock left from cooking the Christmas ham."

    So without further ado, here is my completed reconstruction of what I think the singers are saying. If you notice any mistakes, please let me know!

    ~~~

    When it's Christmastime in Sweden/
    And the snow is ten feet deep/
    He holes up in his kitchen/
    To make his Christmas treats.
    People come from near and far/
    To hinterland and fjord/
    Just to get a taste/
    Of his Christmas smörgåsbord!
    Dip in the pot/
    The bouillon is hot/
    The lingonberries are sweet/
    Dopp in the pot/
    A taste of tunnbröd/
    His surströmming is a treat!
    Lutefisk and rice/
    Isn't that nice?/
    We might have to loosen our skirts!/
    Ja, try the glögg/
    Or it's off to the dog/
    He makes us eat til it hurts!
    His meatballs are so Swedish/
    His marzipan's a delight/
    But his marinated fishballs/
    Will keep you up all night.
    Top it off with pralines/
    In a Swiss nut nougat gourd/
    The reindeer stew/
    Will bring you back to/
    His Christmas smörgåsbord!
    Dip in the pot/
    The bouillon is hot/
    The lingonberries are sweet/
    Dopp in the pot/
    A taste of tunnbröd/
    His surströmming is a treat!
    Lutefisk and rice/
    Isn't that nice?/
    We might have to loosen our skirts!/
    Ja, try the glögg/
    Or it's off to the dog/
    He makes us eat til it hurts!
    Queens Blend preserves, Black currant preserves, Gooseberry preserves, Cloudberry preserves/
    So many preserves/
    He simply deserves/
    To take center stage and say "Dinner is served!"
    Dip in the pot/
    The bouillon is hot/
    The lingonberries are sweet/
    Dopp in the pot/
    A taste of tunnbröd/
    His surströmming is a treat!
    Lutefisk and rice/
    Isn't that nice?/
    We might have to loosen our skirts!/
    Ja, try the glögg/
    Or it's off to the dog/
    He makes us eat til it hurts!

    ~~~

    Merry belated Christmas!

    Dearth
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2016
    Bliffenstimmers and The Count like this.
  2. The Count

    The Count Moderator Staff Member

    This was extremely useful. Then again, it helps when you happen to have the song in question and can pause it after every line to compare/check what's being said. TBH I've always had doubts about what was being said/sung.

    Some of the things I thought were being said included...
    "Look at das/dat rice."
    "But his bernaise with fish sauce."
    "Top it off with trimmings."
    Thought surstrimmings was being said as seurs en crème (rats with ice cream), the one thing that along with a loathing of Jack London's literature has stuck with me all these years.

    Thanks for putting together these lyrics, it definitely helps.
    *Sends over a bottle of glog along with some number cookies. :batty:
     
    Dearth likes this.
  3. snichols1973

    snichols1973 Well-Known Member



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