Great. It's that time of year where everyone pretends to be nice to everyone else. The houses of those on benefits can be spotted from space, due to having more Christmas lights than a large Christmas lights shop, and shares in Poundland take a massive jump thanks to sales of spray on snow.
I'm going to make this a relatively short blog entry, as I'm really busy making mince pies, wrapping presents, giving to charity and watching Christmas movies- the same excuses that you give to someone you've bumped into on the street and haven't seen for ages, and don't really want to talk to, so pretend you're really busy, rather than stand there making awkward conversation about the weather, what they're up to for Christmas, and suggesting arranging that drink that you'll never get round to having.
Don't get me wrong, I do love this time of year. There's just bits of it that really annoy me. Like Jugglers. I've been Christmas shopping about 6 times this year, and there seems to be an unusually high amount of Jugglers. Why do they come out at Christmas? As if at this festive time of year, I'm going to find juggling any less shit than at any other time of the year. And then there's those weirdos with home made trousers that do that thing with two sticks joined by a piece of string, where they toss a large spinning cotton reel in the air, and then catch it again. At no point in life, or in any occupation, would this be of any use to anybody.Stop tossing large cotton reels in the air and then catching them. It's irritating.Irritating for adults.And kids.
Christmas crackers annoy me as well. I like them, don't get me wrong. The hat is amusing, if you can get it on your head without ripping it, the rubbish joke always gets a groan if the person reading it out can get to the punch line before everyone else guesses it, but the gifts inside are an utter waste of time, and always a massive disappointment. There is not one person in this country who doesn't have, lying around in a drawer somewhere, a large plastic hair clip, a small set of playing cards, a plastic fish, or a miniature set of screwdrivers.
I also don't get the whole fuss about Christmas dinner. It's surely just your average Sunday lunch, but dressed up with a jazzy name. It's still meat, vegetables, and gravy, but add a bit of honey, some extra herbs and whatever Jamie, Nigella, Gordon or those two Geordies with beards suggest, and suddenly it's the meal of the year.
In terms of presents, they say 'it's better to give than to receive', but what I like to say is 'receiving is king.' I love getting presents.I'm like a small child, and get that feeling inside my stomach like being on a roller coaster, It's the whole anticipation of what it could be. Mind you, I'm 32, and still haven't mastered the art of pretending to like a gift,and I bet you haven't either. It's especially hard when you're in a room full of people watching you open said gift. All I can say is, praise the Lord for eBay. If you ask the person who's bought you the gift if they have kept the receipt, it kind of gives away the fact that you think their gift of a musical towel is horse shit.
My dear Grandad died earlier this year. I miss my Grandad every day, but his death has eased my Christmas gift burden, mainly because I never had any idea of what to buy him. For the last 20 years, he has received nothing but chocolates, or handkerchiefs. Old people are the only thing to have kept the Handkerchief makers in business. All old people must have very bad runny noses, because everyone will have bought their Grandparents hankies at some point. I think it's lucky my Grandad had well built oak cupboards in his bedroom, because if the top shelf had ever broken, he would have met his death many years ago in a nasty hankie crushing incident. He had literally hundreds, most of them purchased by me. Sadly, he died of old age, but his hankies were sent to a clothing charity, stitched together, and are now being used as giant marquees in Afghanistan. My Grandad was a legend. You could say my Grandad truly was.... the Hankie Chief.
Happy Christmas to all of the 4 people who will read this. Find a space in your drawers somewhere, there's some miniature screwdrivers heading your way.