Author Topic: Xmas is coming!  (Read 2575 times)

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Offline Ian

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Xmas is coming!
« on: November 23, 2014, 09:16:41 am »
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As the days continue to shorten, the weather turns colder and little faces turn anxiously to the skies each evening in case Mr C is doing a test flight for the new sleigh, the mesmerising sights and sounds of Advent float into our perception, like tiny flakes of crystallised water.

It's a truly magical time, as long, clear nights and still, cold air bring that first hint of Christmas - the advertising campaign.  The time of year when the relentless campaign to divide you from your cash is mounted with a military intensity and fervour of which Churchill would have been proud. That sacred time when a seemingly endless line of entertainers (for want of a better description)  and singers conspire to release their collections of truly ancient songs, re-branded as this year's desirable album, and compete with the dead, the barely alive and the utterly unknown for a share of the shekels.  Watch out for the latest releases, which will doubtless include The Best Of X-Factor 2002 - 2009, Pop Stars Meets The Rivals and Cilla Black, The Cast of I'm a Washout Entertain and this year's Must Have offering, Michael Jackson's Dog Howls Thriller.

Christmas is that time of the year when we want to show people how much we love them, when we need to make our families and friends understand the true meaning of Christmas and the time of the year when the English language is mangled beyond recognition.  The plethora of shows that will inevitably be described as 'Truly Unique' and 'Best Ever' will compete with Brand New Re-Runs, Best Ofs and Another Chance to See offerings, designed to accentuate that inevitable downward spiral of hopelessness and misery we all secretly feel as the 25th of December inexorably approaches.

Of course, we all know what Christmas is really about. December 25 used to be the Roman festival of Saturnalia, when inebriated individuals in togas would run up and down the streets thwacking bystanders with leather thongs, a tradition which the thwackees actually enjoyed since it was supposed to boost their fertility levels, and doubtless singing 'Just a Thong at Twilight', and if you find that amusing, you're showing your age :-)) When the Romans turned Christian and gave up leather thongs, they simply tacked a new meaning onto the old holiday. The best thwacker became - yes, the number one Christmas thong...

A minority, of course, believe it to be a celebration of the birth of the Son of God, except no one knows when the aforesaid was actually born, there's some doubt among the Bishops that there was ever an actual 'virgin birth' and even among the most fervent and faithful of God-fearing families the fate of any teenage girl who arrived home one day to tell her devoted father she was pregnant but not to worry as it was the Holy Ghost, can best be left to the imagination.

But all this delightful frippery aside, the real question of how to survive the coming month can possibly be found in the real secret of Christmas.  Christmas - you see - rewards us for being children.  For a couple of days a year, we can act as though we'd never grown up, never encountered the unalloyed delights of variable rate mortgages, HMRC and Council taxes, parking tickets or speed cameras.  It's now just about the only time in the year when the entire family can actually enjoy the same sorts of things together. And although that might be a little sad in itself, it's also a little exciting.
Nothing is so firmly believed as that which we least know.  ― Michel de Montaigne

Si hoc legere scis, nimis eruditionis habes.