|Hear a rare recording of
Axel reciting "The Night Before
Christmas" on TV December 25, 1958! (Courtesy of the
Robert F. Wild collection)
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Northrup, King & Co's. Christmas Program
December 23, 1938
Dere vasn't nobody making no noise, not eefen som mouses
except my brudder-in-law and he is a rat.
De stockings vere hanged by de shimney kinda careful
Because dat feller vit de red knickers vas supposed to be dere.
Vile visions of sugar plums vas dancing in dere heads
And mama in her curlers and ay in my night shirt
Had yust vashed our feet for a long vinter's nap.
Ay yumped out of may bed to see if it vas de boys,
Avay to de vindow ay flew like a flash
Ay coulda made it faster but ay'd yust ate some hash.
And it vas kinda shining like it vasn't night
And vat to my vondering eyes should appear
But a teeney-weeney sleigh and eight tiny horses.
Ay could tell right avay in may night shirt it was yolly St. Nick
More faster dan eagles his horses dey came
And he whistled and hollered and called em bad names.
On Cosmetics - On Stupid - On Visconsin - On Pittsburg
To de top of de porch to de top of de vall
Now pass avay, pass avay, pass out for cat's sake!
And in two shakes of a skunk's tail ay heard on de roof
Dose animals monkeying around mit dere feet
As ay sucked in may head and tripped over de cat
Down de shimney came Santa Claus flat on his back.
And ay laughed ven ay seen him - ay couldn't help it.
A vink of his eye and a twist of his head
Soon gave me to know ay didn't have nothin to vorry about.
And de smoke wrapped around his head like a hoop.
He was qvite broad in places - he had a round little belly
Dat shook ven he'd snicker - like a bottle of likker.
His cheeks vas like roses - his nose like some Cherries
His droll little mouth vas drawed up like a bow
And de beard on his chin dragged down in de snow.
And put lots of pretty stuff in de hosiery and turned vit a squirt
And putting his fingers in front of his nose
He says - "You know me Kids" and, holy smoke! he vas gone.
he had promised em for Christmas
And dey yumped up and ran like dey had sat on some tistles
Ay heard him say as he scrammed out of dere
"A Snappy Christmas to all and to all - Ay hope yu get vat yu vant."
The Night Before Christmas
(recorded in 1964)
AXEL: Hi, kids! Diss iss Axel, sending Christmas greetin's to all of you, all the way from the Tree House! Now, have a nice holiday season, won't you kids, hah? Oh, say - there's someone else here who wants to send Christmas wishes. Oh, uh, Carmine!
CARMEN: Yes, Axel! I'm out in the kitchen making oatmeal Christmas cookies.
AXEL: Well, come out here on the Tree House porch and say hi to alla da kids, and say - bring me one of those oatmeal cookies, will ya?
CARMEN: O-kay. Here's one of my cookies, Axel. Hi there, boys and girls. I want each and every one of you to have the merriest Christmas ever, you hear? Okay?
AXEL: Uh, say, Carmine, I don't want to dampen your Christmas spirits but aren't dese oatmeal cookies a little soggy?
CARMEN: They're supposed to be - I haven't baked them yet.
AXEL: Oh, well, they sure ain't the way Gramma used to make 'em anyways. Say, let me know when dey're all cooked, will ya, and I'll help you lift 'em outta da oven. (laughs)
CARMEN: (laughs) Say, your Grandma Torgeson is someone very special, isn't she, Axel?
AXEL: She sure is, Carmine. You know, I remember each Chrissmoose she used to get us all gaddered around the fireplace and tell us in her own special way the Night Before Christmas story. Would you like to hear it the way Gramma used to tell it, Carmine?
CARMEN: Oh, I'd like that very much, Axel.
AXEL: All right. Sit down next to me now and listen real good.
Axel's famous version of
The Night Before Christmas
When all through the place I was stayin' at
There wasn't nobody makin' no noises, not even some mouses
Except my brooder-in-law, and he is a rat!
Because the fella wid dose red knickers was s'posed to get dere!
The monsters was tucked all snug in their beds
While wisions of sugar plums dance in their heads.
Had just washed our feet for a long winter's nap.
When out on the grass dere rose a heck of a noise
I yumped outta my bed to see if it was the boys!
(I coulda made it faster but I was fulla mama's hash).
The moon was shining on the new snow what had just come down
And it was shining kinda like it wasn't night
But a teensy-weensy sleigh and eight teensy-weensy reinhorses!
There was a tiny little driver, so sudden and quick
I could tell right away in my goosepimples - it was yolly Saint Nick.
And he whistled and hollered and called 'em all names:
Now Hasher, now Trasher, now Victor, now Prancin'!
On, Tackhead! On, Stupid! Onnnnn, 'Sisconsin!
To da top of da porch, to da top of da wall
Now dash away, dash away!
Would you reinhorses please get da heck up on da wall,
If you don't mind please?
I heerd those aminals monkeyin' around wid their hoofs
As I sucked in my head and tripped over the pewsycat
Down the schimney come Santa Claus - flat on his back.
And I laughed when I seen him - I couldn't help it.
A vink of his eye and a tvist of his neck
Soon give me to know I deent have nothin' to worry about.
And his smoke wrap'd around his head like a hoop
He was quite broad in places, and he had a round little belly
That shook when he giggle like a bowlful of yelly.
His scheeks was like roses and his nose like a scherry
His droll little mouth was drawed up like a bow
And da beard on his schin dragged clean down in da snow.
And filled up the hosiery and turned wid a squirt
And pewtin' his fingers alongside of his nose
He says, "Have a good time, schildren!"
And up the shimney he goes - psssshhht!
They yumped up and ran like they sat on a tistle!
I heard him say as he scrammed outta dere
"A Merry Christmas to all, and to all Good Night!"