She Loves Me
A sour response to the increased commercialization of Christmas is nothing new. It was already an ingrained attitude in 1963, when Jerry Bock, Sheldon Harnick and Joe Masteroff wrote She Loves Me, a musical based on the play Parfumerie by Hungarian playwright Miklos Laszlo. The action takes place at Maraczek's Parfumerie in Budapest. The story concludes at Christmas, when the shop's harried clerks attempt to help the frenzied holiday shoppers, singing the sardonic "Twelve Days to Christmas." The lyrics begin tamely, with "Twelve days to Christmas/Plenty of time to do your Christmas shopping/These are the people who shop in time, shop in time." Soon enough, however, the employees are complaining, "Four days to Christmas/Just enough time to do your Christmas shopping/These are the people who shop in time, just in time, barely in time/These are the people who calculate…AND THEY'RE THE WORST OF ALL!" Christmas Eve ends well, though. Amalia and Georg — the employees who love to hate one another, but have unknowingly been secretly corresponding as "Dear Friend" — discover the truth about one another, and go off to spend Christmas dinner with Amalia's mother.
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