DECK THE MALLS

Cledus T. Judd walks briskly through Nashville's Opry Mills mall, pondering the true meaning of Christmas.

"It's not about the tree, the decorations or buying stuff," muses Cledus. "You can't put a price on Christmas."

Suddenly, Cledus stops in his tracks and peers into the window of Hilo Hattie, a Hawaiian-themed shop packed with knickknacks like dancing dashboard hula dolls and coconut piggy banks.

"Ooooh! I love this!" exclaims Cledus, eyeing a wildly colorful Hawaiian shirt. "I hope Santa is watching. I've been good."

This Christmas will be especially merry for Cledus. His new holiday album, Cledus Navidad, is generating belly laughs nationwide and his video for "It's A Great Day To Be A Guy" - a parody of Travis Tritt's "It's A Great Day To Be Alive" - hit No. 1 on CMT. He also recently took on co-hosting duties for the network's hot countdown show, MWL ("Most Wanted Live").

So what does Cledus want for Christmas?

"Time off!" he exclaims. "I want to be lazy and hang out with my friends and my mom."

But before he can relax, Cledus has some serious shopping to do.

-- M.B. Roberts

CLEDUS' GIFT LIST

Dixie Chicks - "Landslide" insurance.

Shania Twain - My phone number - again. She seems to keep losing it.

Toby Keith - Bus ticket to Indiana ... to visit his "Hoosier Daddy."

Phil Vassar - A wall accessory to organize all his keys - you know ... a key board.

George Strait - Dance lessons. Gotta get George moving!

See who else is on Cledus' gift list in the current "Newsstand Issue" (12/24/02) on sale now!

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