All I want for Christmas is Mariah Carey. No, not the real Mariah Carey, with all insecurities, drama, broken family history, and ill-fated marriages to famous people. Not even the real Mariah Carey with all her ageless natural beauty and sex appeal, or the musician with all the talent and terrific singing voice. I want the Mariah Carey in the song All I Want For Christmas Is You.
That Mariah Carey is the woman every man remembers from his past–the woman he longed for in high school or college, the one with the fuzzy sweaters or not-too-revealing outfits with the curves in all the right places. The one with the bright smile and radiant warmth and the voice that set your heart thumping. She’s the woman you really yearn for–the woman who takes complements sincerely and dispenses them back effortlessly–the one who shares her time selflessly with you and enjoys it to boot. She’s the one with no hidden agendas or misplaced ambitions. She is the one who snuggles up to you if you are close and flashes unselfconscious smiles at you when you are not.
It is this Mariah Carey we want to spend Christmas with, outside in the snow or inside in front of the fireplace. We want to exchange gifts with her, laughing with joy at simple surprises and taking in the small gestures of thoughtfulness. She’s the only girl we would go caroling with and the one girl with whom a sleigh ride under warm fur blankets is an intoxicating possibility. We love the smell of her, unwashed or washed, and never tire of feeling her skin under our fingertips or pressing our face into her hair.
Mariah Carey plays tricks with our memories. Our subconscious remembers the young waif-thin girl she was and our newest memories stores the image of the mature curvaceous woman she has become. We cross-reference her with the vivacious girls of our past and the maternal women of our present, and some of the details blur.
None of this matters. I know what I want–I want the Mariah Carey in the music videos. I want all those warm moments that have been unfulfilled and all those happy moments that might yet come. I want that some of that Mariah Carey Christmas magic for myself. I want to immerse myself in it, and if I only got it one day of the year on Christmas, well, then that would be ok.
It is all I want on Christmas. So perhaps metaphorically, and perhaps not, if you are that woman, then all I want is you. We all do.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all!