This song is a polarizing one. For every person that loves the cheesy, repetitive rhythms; monotone vocals; and cutesy holiday-romance lyrics, there are two or three folks who want to stab their ears out when this song comes on the radio.
Ska-pop darlings Save Ferris put an uber-'90s spin on the song. And, of course, the Spice Girls wobbled and warbled its way through a version.
But of course it was the Waitresses -- a fabulous New York City-via-Kent/Akron, Ohio, new-wave band -- who wrote the song. Singer Patty Donahue sadly died of lung cancer in 1996, but the band's discography is well worth checking out (including the sax-driven skronk of "Bruiseology").
In fact, right now the band is actually pulling a Radiohead and offering a B-sides/outtakes/rarities CD for "whatever you want to pay." Click here for the download; it includes early demos of "I Know What Boys Like," versions of the Square Pegs theme song (an uber new-wave '80s sitcom starring Sarah Jessica Parker that always featured super-cool guests, like Devo) and more.
-- Annie Zaleski