Liner Notes

The liner notes to the lyrics to the music to the trailer to the Heinrichs Family Christmas Newsletter.

The Liner Notes to the Lyrics to the Music to the Trailer to the Heinrichs Family Christmas Newsletter


This is the very model of a Christmas fam’ly newsletter

Yes, we stole the music and some of the lyrics from Gilbert & Sullivan. We would offer apologies to them, except they’re dead.

For characters and plot we really doubt that you could choose better;

Jay thought it would be fun to send up family newsletters, but then he realized that his newsletter’s plot was just as lame.

Exotic destinations and pursuits extremely zealous

Well, not that exotic. Jay did a book tour in London, appearing in seven BBC programs. In one he got to sit next to the Brexit minister who had hogged the coffee in the breakroom beforehand. 

With some rich, good looking relatives too nice to make you jealous.

Well, not that rich. But Jay and Dorothy attended Dorothy’s family reunion in Columbia, Maryland, where there were many good-looking people.

Our writing is grammatical and deeply analytical

Jay is working on a set of blog posts on tropes, which clearly the world demands. 

 With doses of droll humor that are not the least political.

Long before Trump was a candidate, Jay wrote in Thank You for Arguing that being a successful businessman did not necessarily translate into being a successful President. He’s getting flamed by “conservatives” who say he’s anti-Trump when really Jay should be praised for being…well, not that wise.

 Our mugs are photogenic and our food is Instagrammable

Many friends visited our new Fire Palalace, built specifically to roast oysters. But partially burned oysters don’t photograph well.

 Our family tree’s so noble you will find it diagrammable.

Dorothy Junior has a coat of arms and wears amazing homemade costumes while her boyfriend Jeff fights battles in real armor. They’re big into the Society for Creative Anachronism. Dorothy Senior and Jay are more into uncreative anachronism, aka “getting older.”

 The women work in healthcare, saving lives and raising millions

Literally. Dorothy Senior is loving her work as senior principal gifts officer for Dartmouth’s medical school and the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center. 

 While making life more tolerable for doctors and civilians.

Technically most doctors are civilians but we needed a rhyme.

 For characters and plot we really doubt that you can choose better

Than this the very model of a Christmas fam’ly newsletter.

The men devoted all their brains to matters intellectual.

Son George just helped to start a school pedalogically effectual.

He is one of five faculty in the new Downtown School, a Lakeside School in Seattle. George chairs the History Department, is Dean of Students, Head of Facilities, Director of Safety & Security, and Athletic Director. That’s because there is no administration other than the head of school. The Downtown School is a spinoff of the school where Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates send their sons. (Gates is an alum; it’s where he met Microsoft cofounder Paul Allen.) 

 He first received a new degree in military history

A master’s from Norwich University.

While Jay taught feline arguments (just why remains a mystery).

How to Argue with a Cat is a bestseller in the UK and climbing the charts in the U.S., because cats. The cat animations, along with the illustrations in the book, are the work of Jay’s cat partner Natalie Palmer-Sutton. 

 Young Dorothy lives with boyfriend Jeff, a doctor of biology

He’s a postdoc at NIH doing genetics research.

 While serving as a badass nurse on patients’ physiology.

She’s a rapid response nurse at the Washington Medstar Hospital Center. When things go horribly wrong, she runs down the hall and sets things right, saving lives and rectifying humours. When asked for a job description, she replied, “I fight death.”

 Her mother raised the money for a center strictly palliative,

The Jack Byrne Center is a state-of-the-art facility that seems like the greatest hotel anywhere. Patients can have their beds literally rolled out the door onto private decks in the woods. Palliative care is one solution to the nation spending one-third of healthcare costs on the last year of life.

 Which makes us all quite proud that Dorothy Senior is our ralliative.

She climbed Cardigan Mountain just 70 times this year—down from her record of more than 100 a few years back—in part because she’s focusing on resistance training. She continues to run Orange, our town of 287 people, as chair of the Board of Selectmen. She also chairs the Conservation Commission while serving as a eucharistic minister at the St. Thomas Episcopal Church in Hanover, New Hampshire.

 Our travels were so broad it would be difficult to map it all;

Besides London, Jay did a book tour through Philadelphia, Dallas, Denver, and Seattle, along with trips to Chicago, Washington, Helsinki and Sun Valley, among other places. He and Dorothy spent their 36th anniversary in Baltimore while George vacationed in Kauai. 

 The kids live in Seattle and nearby the nation’s capital. 

George has a beautiful apartment next to the Seattle Center, where the school is located. Jay was bummed that he had moved from Sun Valley, home to some of the finest Nordic skiing in North America, until he realized that the Methow Valley is just three hours from Seattle. So it’s all cool. Dorothy Junior occupies a house near the Bethesda Metro. Her Jeff walks to work at NIH.

 For characters and setting we don’t think that you can choose better

Than this the very model of a Christmas fam’ly newsletter.

In fact, since Jay’s books can be read in Turkish and Romanian,

Since Spanish Catalans, Koreans, even the Canadians

His books have been translated into 14 languages, counting the Queen’s English. More than 400,000 paper copies of Thank You for Arguinghave been sold.

Have learned the many dark arts of the arguments rhetorical;

And figures that surpass Jay’s wife in expertise arborical;

Actually, that last is unproven. Dorothy Senior knows a lot about trees. In fact, she and Jay began dating when she was Director of Big Trees for the American Forestry Association, a title of which Jay was undeservedly proud.

 Since they all know precisely what is meant by “anacoluthon,”

A figure that ends a sentence with a different grammatical structure than the one it began with. See Trump’s Twitter feed.

 Since they can spot the tricks that advertisers use to sell youth on;

In short, when they’ve a goodly dose of exhortation tactical

You’ll say you never met a clan so thoroughly impractical.

For Jay’s comprehensive knowledge, though he’s plucky and adventury,

He stole “plucky and adventury” from Gilbert & Sullivan.

 Has only been brought up to the beginning of last century;

He stole that line, too.

 But still we made this trailer, so we doubt that you could do better

Than this the very model of a Christmas fam’ly newsletter.

Next year maybe we’ll skip the trailer andthe newsletter and just write a snarky negative review of the (nonexistent) trailer. How meta!