The Christmas Story about The Christmas Song


Each year around Christmas I like to revisit a heartwarming story about Mel Tormé as told by screenwriter Mark Evanier. Evanier is a Los Angeles native who has been in the television, animation, and comics industries since the early 1970s. His blog has become known as a reliable souce for a heartfelt obituary/eulogy column for many famous folks when they pass away, often with a personal anecdote about working with them.

He wrote this piece when actor/singer/songwriter Mel Tormé died in 1999. Here’s a snippet:

“That’s Mel Tormé down there. Do you know who he is?”

The singer was about 25 so it didn’t horrify me that he said, “No.”

I asked, “Do you know ‘The Christmas Song?'”

Again, a “No.”

I said, “That’s the one that starts, ‘Chestnuts roasting on an open fire…'”

“Oh, yes,” the caroler chirped. “Is that what it’s called? ‘The Christmas Song?'”

“That’s the name,” I explained. “And that man wrote it.” The singer thanked me, returned to his group for a brief huddle…and then they strolled down towards Mel Tormé. I ditched the rest of my sandwich and followed, a few steps behind. As they reached their quarry, they began singing, “Chestnuts roasting on an open fire…” directly to him.

Okay, it keeps going and gets better, so jump on over to Evanier’s site to enjoy it. And if you lilke that one, you might also enjoy his behind-the-scenes encounters with Larry Hagman at the pinnacle of his Dallas stardom.

Adventures with Microsoft

Kirk Chritton at Microsoft
My Microsoft screen debut.

MCH’s relationship with Microsoft has truly blossomed. We’ve been working closely with the product team that’s developing PowerMap and other tools in the Power BI suite. In fact, CEO Peter Long and I traveled to Redmond this fall to record a video for the Microsoft folks.

After a few rounds of edits, it’s really powerful. Now we’re just waiting for the big reveal, and I’m dying to share it. As soon as it gets the green light, I’ll post it here. Watch. This. Space.

A very KCDMA Christmas

KCDMA LogoAs KCDMA president, it was my honor to host the annual holiday party last night. I know that Kelly and I had a wonderful time visiting with fellow board members and past presidents, and the feeling seemed to be mutual.

These social gatherings always make me aware of how genuinely nice direct marketers tend to be. Our group spans various disciplines and at least two generations, but everyone seems cut from some of the same cloth: smart, curious, welcoming, hardworking, and nerdy in at least some way. In other words, this is my tribe!

It’s been a great year at the KCDMA. Happy holidays, everyone!