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Sunday, 25 December 2011


It's Christmas Day and I'm sitting in front of the computer. Not, you will have noticed, peeling the spuds, mixing the stuffing or doing any one of the myriad of Christmas chores that is, apparently, the essence of Christmas cheer.
I'm not on line doing a bit of pre-2012 Christmas shopping, or hunting for bargains now the High Streets and Shopping Malls are drained of life and lolly. I'm blogging!
Not very original, doing this on this special day. Except this special day is not that, is it?

It's like any other day with bells and whistles on. It's an excuse for lazy thinking and Pavlovian responses.

It's not the ritual that I object to. The repeatedly told tale of the holy birth never pales, the carols that awaken in most of us a sense of beauty and wonderment, the anticipation each year; in none of that I can find fault.

It might be a fundamental truth of our times that for many retailers one third of their yearly takings happen at Christmas, but I am tired of the purgatory that is consumption. As if a measure of contentment, well-being or completeness has to be increased shoppers' footfall or an upgraded Xbox or iPad. Surely we're more than that, expect more, wish, prey fervently for so much more. Yet no matter how much we all seem to complain about it, we all, willingly or otherwise, climb on the  "Yule-Tide"conveyor belt.

I am sick and tired of the media switching on auto-pilot for more than 2 weeks this time of year. Surely, if not us, then the occasion deserves something special, something different, dare I say, something extraordinary. Not, the same old material regurgitated year after year.

I like Morecombe and  Wise as much as the next man, or the Two Ronnies or Porridge or Only Fools and Horses, or ....but couldn't we, on this one day, have something completely different.

For a start, banning advertisements for beds, sofa and settees and home furnishings. At a stroke people's sense of well being would increase exponentially.

Banning all the personalities, celebrities, presenters and pundits - especially Stephen Fry - that litter our TV scape throughout the year. They swamp our living rooms  like a tide of the living dead, their tittle tattle more deafening and deadly than an artillery bombardment at Passendale.

Making the holding of end of year quizzes, on TV, radio and the printed media, punishable by slow roasting on a spit.

However, I would make it compulsory for Alasdair Sim's 1950 "Scrooge" to be shown on every TV channel at least once on Christmas Day.

The most innovative change would be to enforce a media black out from about lunchtime on Christmas Day - just after the Queen's Christmas message. And as part of the move to encourage a shift away from services towards manufacturing I would introduce a massive programme of piano and penny whistle making so that by Christmas 2012 every home would have at least one upright piano in the living room and penny whistle in every loo. All schools would have compulsory piano lessons. I'd go further and legislate so that all work places would have to have singing classes during lunch breaks.

This programme of re-invigoration would, I suggest, ensure that Christmas would be a time of music, mirth and merriment and not a re-run of every other Saturday writ large.

Until that state of Yuletide Nivarna arrives, I hope you all have the Christmas you wish for.


RubberCrutch said...

You poor guy. Sounds like you might need a small dose of Stan Freberg:

Also, do stop by my online "allotment" to harvest your very special Christmas gifts. Your Piano In Every Parlor Act gets my vote. I would recommend extending it to include painting, cartooning, and lessons in close vocal harmony, but then that might make it too complex.

Not sure what you have against Stephen Fry, but I myself have always had difficulty liking him since my first exposure to him was in his miscast role as a leering, smarmy Jeeves. His character struck me as someone who would have Tuppy Glossop trussed up in the attic to use as a pincushion while quilting with human skin.

Marginalia said...

I say spot on RubberCrutch. Jeeves what a right little rotter as portrayed by that cad Fry.

Spiffin' 78 old man by that actor fella Freberg. Colonial is he?

Steve said...

You get my vote.

Anonymous said...

What's a lunch break?

The Sagittarian said...

Well, if it's different you want you are welcome to drop by our cheery puddle of liquefaction that we lovingly call home....
I am tired of the media banging on about how much was spent in the Christmas lead up. I must be the only one who didn't realise it was all about the money, honey! Cheers anyway.

Marginalia said...

Dear Steve, cheers.

Dear Anon, it's the stuff you scrap off your key board.

Dear Sag, may next year be less bumpy.