all I want for christmas is a HippopotamusMost people have heard the song, “All I Want for Christmas is My Two Front Teeth.” But “All I Want for Christmas is a HIPPOPOTAMUS?!?!”

The song is actually titled, “I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas” and was written by John Rox and recorded and released in 1953 by 10-year-old Gayla Peevey. It was an instant hit. It was so popular, in fact, that “a local promoter picked up on the popularity of the song and Peevey’s local roots, and launched a campaign to present her with an actual hippopotamus on Christmas,” according to Wikipedia. “The campaign succeeded, and she was presented with an actual hippopotamus,” which she donated to the local zoo.

“I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas” inspired a book by the same title and it has been recorded by various artists, including the Captain and Tennille and Dr. Demento. You can even see the Jonas Brothers singing “I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas” on YouTube.

Here’s a cute video with the original recording of “I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas,” with lyrics below.

I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas Lyrics
I want a hippopotamus for Christmas
Only a hippopotamus will do
Don’t want a doll, no dinky Tinker Toy
I want a hippopotamus to play with and enjoy

I want a hippopotamus for Christmas
I don’t think Santa Claus will mind, do you?
He won’t have to use our dirty chimney flue
Just bring him through the front door, that’s the easy thing to do

I can see me now on Christmas morning, creeping down the stairs
Oh what joy and what surprise when I open up my eyes
To see a hippo hero standing there

I want a hippopotamus for Christmas
Only a hippopotamus will do
No crocodiles, no rhinoceroses
I only like hippopotamuses
And hippopotamuses like me too

Mom says the hippo would eat me up, but then
Teacher says a hippo is a vegetarian
There’s lots of room for him in our two-car garage
I’d feed him there and wash him there and give him his massage

I can see me now on Christmas morning, creeping down the stairs
Oh what joy and what surprise when I open up my eyes
To see a hippo hero standing there

I want a hippopotamus for Christmas
Only a hippopotamus will do
No crocodiles or rhinoceroseses
I only like hippopotamuseses
And hippopotamuses like me too!