Bah Humbug – Final edition Part 24

Day 24 – People that moan about Christmas

Miserable fuckers. All they do is bring everyone down. “Oh I hate Christmas, it sucks” and “It’s not as good as it used to be”.

Personally, I think by doing away with the whole festive season you would actually do away with these incessant moaners. Sitting there with their bottom lip on the floor. Anyone would think they had wasted a shit load of money on a load of old junk and eaten so much they had to diet for the next three months as a penance.

People like that should count their blessings. It could be worse, they could be in debt, fallen out with family members or some how broke bones when walking in the snow and ice.

I hear that the poor children in Africa aren’t sitting round moaning about the Christmas period. They’re more likely to be moaning that they had corn maize and flies again for dinner.

And then there are those that don’t get irony. They ask for it and all they get is socks. I mean how can you press your shirt and trousers with socks?

Now…does anyone want this strange smelling old Aunt that’s been sat in the corner drinking all the port? Oh and you can take them decorations down now, they make the house look untidy.

Have you kept the receipt?

Continue reading “Bah Humbug – Final edition Part 24”

Bah Humbug – Part 23

Day 23 – Dinnertime

So there I am. I’m sat waiting for my dinner. My tummy rumbles and groans as the perfume of roasting meats and vegetables permeate the air. But because my eldest brother is working late we have to wait for him. Of course this means that the usual Christmas day dinner time of 2pm has long passed and it is approaching a gut gnawing 5pm. He arrives. The meal begins.

So there I am. Asked to sing at a special specific Christmas day carol service. The lack of public transport and reluctance for people to give me a lift (I bare an uncanny resemblance to Peter Sutcliffe) means that I have to walk the 3 miles from the church to the family home. I arrive at 3pm. The meal has long been consumed. I am left with a shrivelled and desiccated dinner in the microwave on the none matching dinner plate, the none matching cutlery, the none matching place mat and the cracker from the previous Christmas.

So there I am. Much older. Much wiser. Still sitting on the odd chair, eating from the none-matching dinner plate with the none matching cutlery while observing that the other dinner guests have matching plates and cutlery. It was at this time…I realised….I was special specific. Something like that sticks with you for life.

Anyway, I digress, dinner time. Every year my mum would ask “Do you want sprouts?” “Do you want Parsnips?” “Do you want Christmas Pudding?” and every year I would reply “No mother, I have been eating here since 1973 and you should know by now that I do not partake in the illegal consumption of sprouts/parsnips/Christmas pudding (delete as applicable)”. So to avoid any arguments I will now do a poll to find out your preferences for Christmas dinner.

And it came to pass that Aham son of Joheb didst place the said poll behind the cut and saw that it was good.

[LJ2ME] Bah Humbug – part 22

day 22 – giant green radioactive maggots

There is simply just nothing more frustating about christmas than giant green radioactive maggots. They’re everywhere! I really cannot see the appeal or see any reason why people insist on having them. All they do is ooze slime all over the place and lay eggs in the ears of sleeping people.

Bah Humbug – Part 21

Day 21 – Traffic Chaos

Much akin to the problems with snow, the Christmas period is renown for traffic problems. This year, it seems, is no exception.

If it’s not snow causing gridlock and road closures it’s everyone travelling at once to get from A to B. Traffic jams, slow moving queues and giant maggots blocking motorways, traffic at Christmas can be as taxing as the VAT on presents. Today, it took me 40 minutes to travel my usual 20 minute journey from Brierley to Barnsley. Mostly due to people deciding, quite rightly, to crawl along the snow covered roads at 20mph. Now I wouldn’t usually mind because I am a fairly considerate chap but when I say “snow covered roads” I am exaggerating. It was mush. Mush covered roads. So there was plenty of grip and traction and very little in the way of ice.

I recall one year travelling from Wakefield to Liverpool on the M62 and I saw 8 cars broken down. Foolishly the wife exclaimed “Imagine being broken down on a motorway at Christmas!” just as the Vectra decided that enough was enough and veered toward the hard shoulder. Oh how we laughed as we later ate reheated Christmas dinner all dried up and shrivelled.

And yet a previous year we managed to travel the 80 miles in just under an hour!

This is because, in Britain, if you want to get an idea of what it was like travelling on Motorways in the 1970’s you should set out on a journey on Christmas day. For you will behold how empty the roads can be.

But not to be outdone, this year the good old Christmas demons have pulled out all of the stops. My sojourn to Liverpool this evening has gone the way of the last bus as the exwife in her infinite wisdom went to Eurodisney this weekend.

Now, if you have been hiding under a rock this week or you live in the US, you probably won’t know that the Channel Tunnel (that railway line that connects Britain to the continent) suffered failures and has been closed since Friday night because of the cold. This means the Exwife is now stuck in France, though last I heard they were going to catch a ferry instead. Because of this, my visit to the olds and Liverpool has had to be postponed until tomorrow throwing my plans out by one day boo hiss.

So my effort to thwart the Christmas travel chaos has been….thwarted and tomorrow I face a long drive over the M62 to that jewel in the West coast through yet more ice and loads of trucks and lorries making that last minute Christmas delivery and tonight I spend time in the company of the ever so conversational puss cats. Joy!

Big. Hairy. Monkey. Balls

Bah Humbug – Part 20

Day 20 – Mad Friday

Venturing into Barnsley town centre on the last Friday before Christmas is possibly the stupidest thing to do ever. Unless of course you like thronging crowds of pissed up Yorkshire people vomitting, fighting and being squeezed like sardines into the variety of bars and clubs there are in the metropolitan area.

Personally, I’m glad I didn’t bother. I mean getting jostled about and crammed into bars is not my idea of fun. But be under no illusion. Mad Friday, or Black Friday as it is known in some areas, is a national, if not international, phenomenon.

Seriously, do people like this kind of thing? Is it a new level of socialising I’ve just not grasped? Another example of me doing life wrong?

My idea of fun is sitting in a nice quiet bar, enjoying audible conversation about old toot whilst supping refreshing beers from around the country. Not trying to move my elbow to lift a lukewarm lager to my lips in a sardine tin rugby scrum of buffoons and underdressed ladies whilst my legs ache from trying my best to remain standing in between jostles. Bah. Humbug.

Bah Humbug – Part 19

Day 19 – Nuts

Nothing says Christmas more to me than nuts. I love nuts. Especially walnuts. Hazelnuts are ok, Brazil nuts are a pain in the bum to get out of their shell, peanuts make me snore and almonds…well I can take or leave almonds.

But I love the nuts. Can’t get enough of them.

So why would I include nuts in a grincheque series about Christmas? Surely, if I love nuts I wouldn’t put have written about them. Well…it’s easy…Nuts make me fat. So the easy availability of nuts at Christmas guarantees that I will be a tub of lard by the end of January. Not only that, but the excessive amounts of peanuts, which I can’t help but scoff down, means that I will snore and wake the entire county of South Yorkshire.

Admittedly that’s not a strong enough reason to include nuts as a bad thing about Christmas, especially as I’ve got a love for nuts. But to be honest. I wrote “Nuts” down for my reminder for todays post and I haven’t the foggiest what it was I was going to gripe about….

Now where are them walnuts…..

Bah Humbug – Part 18

Day 18 – Snow

Though not entirely a Christmassy thing snow is one of those things that really irritate about the season. Well…maybe not the snow…But the British reaction to snow….that’s a different matter entirely.

A case in point was last night. All this week the news on the telly and radio has been “ZOMG TEH SNOWZ0RZ A COMING!”. You would think the world was preparing for a famine or a war or something. Not just a little dusting of snow.

Of course the vast majority of the snow landed and settled in the South East of England. For those unfamiliar with British Geography, the South East is where the busy parts of the country are. Mostly London and Kent and other associated areas.

Now if you were any right minded individual you would think “Oh in such a metropolitan area I should expect that a little bit of snow would pose no problem to infrastructure.” Well…yes…you would. But no. You would be foolishly wrong to suggest such a thing, and those that normally do not listen to your wise wise words would have perversely listened to every word and inflection you spoke and mock you for being incorrect. People would point at you in the street and old ladies would giggle childishly as you walked past. As they do.

Last night it snowed. The Breakfast news on BBC this morning (Today presented by Charlie “I need to go on a presenters course” Stayt and Susanna “Today I’m dressed up like a turkey in this silver top” Reid) had nothing but “ZOMG! SNOWZ0RZ” and “ZOMG TIS TEH END OF WORLD” and “ZOMG SNOW WE’RE ALL DO0M3D”.

Now, had I been a foolish person, which I assure you I am not, I might have thought that by going outside I would be putting my own life at risk and the lives of emergency services too. I should stay at home as the media suggest, barrage my doors and windows and survive on the 30 year old tin of self warming baked beans I have in my larder. But one glance out of the windows of Gnomepants Manor would have told any person of sense that the snow in this part of the world was “small potatoes” compared to previous years and one would have said “Bunch of southern poofs” in reaction to the fuss being made by the people on the telly.

To be fair though, the snow “down south” was fairly deep comparatively and yes, Tarquin Posh-Bastard would probably have been flapping at the prospect of getting snow on his brogues and disgusted that his pre-Christmas round of Golf with the board of directors would have to be cancelled. But with Tarquin’s woes aside, the fuss….well it was a bit too much. Considering.

Anyway, it is generally accepted that where there is Christmas there should be snow. Is this because we can gaze safely from the comfort of our centrally heated house comforted in the knowledge that nobody really goes out on Christmas day or is it something more traditional and sinister?

Who knows. I suspect there is something sinister behind it. Probably involving the secret government weather machine and insiduous enforced iconography of snow. But what ever it is, it’s nothing I am able to put my finger on at the moment….

Bah Humbug – Part 17

Day 17 – Birthdays

Now those that profess to knowing me in a personal capacity will know that today is my birthday. Now what has this got to do with Christmas you may ask, well don’t ask me….ask the many other people that suffer the unfortunate circumstance of being born in December or during the Christmas period.

more

Bah Humbug – Part 16

Hope you’re still enjoying this series.

Day 16 – Time and anticlimax

A weird thing happens. I think it starts at puberty but it could develop later on in life. I’m not talking about facial hair here.

So when you’re little, Christmas day feels like it goes on for a week. But somewhere in your lifetime something happens and Christmas day ends up feeling like 5 minutes long. Yet, in reality, the day is only 24 hours long. It’s really weird. Am I the only one that’s noticed this?

I suppose the old adage, “Time flies when you’re having fun” applies here, but trust me, I don’t always have fun at Christmas and it still feels like five minutes. Maybe it’s the prechristmas build up. The weeks upon weeks upon weeks of “Buy this before we sell out” and “Get your Christmas stuff here” and “ZOMGOMG AM SO EXCITEDZ0RZ @ XMIZ!” that add to the whole “Is it bed time yet? What do you mean it’s only 10am!” thing. Maybe it’s the opposite, I don’t know.

I do know that Christmas always feels like a “Is that it?!” kind of thing. Do you know what I mean? Maybe you don’t. Maybe you do. Either way, I’ll give a comparison. You know them big scary rides at theme parks? The ones where the queue snakes round the park? The ones where you can expect to queue up for an hour before you even get to see the turnstile? By the time you’ve got to the last safety gate you’re like “ZOMG!” and you’re so excited you feel like if you pee you might piss out a kidney. Then you get on the ride and just as you’re opening your mouth to go “Yaayyy” it’s over and you’re like “Was that it?” It can be such a come down.

I suppose it might be because in some places I’ve worked I’ve had the whole work right up to the last minute of Christmas eve then come in again first thing Boxing day. I’ve even worked in places where coming in on a Christmas day went on a rotational basis. But working at the Universities and in the Civil service where you get a nice free 2 week holiday didn’t make the feeling of Christmas anticlimax go away. Those two weeks just felt like a week.

Even one year, 2003 I think, I managed to manipulate my annual leave to allow me a whole month off work because of the way bank holidays fell that year. Even then, it only felt like I’d had five minutes out. I suppose relativity has something to do with it and no doubt the whole “fun” thing too.

But yeah….time at Christmas…where does it go?

Bah Humbug – Part 15

Day 15 – The Fat Man in the Red Babygrow

Let’s say you have children. Let’s say they tell you there’s a weird fat bloke in a red baby grow that comes to them and tells them if they are good they can have toys. They tell you he comes to their room at night and he gets in through the chimney.

You’d call social services.

Well wouldn’t you?

Well I would hope you would. Or call the police at least.

Why is it fine to have a fat stranger with a babygrow fetish come to children once a year, threaten them and give them toys when in normal circumstances this would be frowned upon?

evil corporate santa returns Worse still, he tells them he comes from the North Pole and yet he bares no resemblance to Nanook or any other Innuit tribe member.

Surely this man is deranged. A paedophile, a creep, a suspicious character.

Worse still is when you find out he is financially backed by global toothrotting megacorp Coca-Cola. Surely that should set alarm bells ringing.

I blame him for all the evils of Christmas. The greed, the avarice, the sloth and the lust (have you ever seen them cute students dressed in sexy “Santa’s little helper” costumes? mmmmmmm). And yet people decorate their houses with effigies and portraits of him. He has been slowly crossing the globe like some slow acting dictator from a Consumerist capitalist state. Karl Marx would probably be rotating so fast in his grave that Groucho and Zeppo would be trying to get out of his way

It’s quite simple to break this spell. When you go outsatan_claus and about this week, whenever you see a picture or effigy of the fat man in red, mentally change the image to that of say…Fidel Castro…or…George W Bush….or….Nicolae Ceaucescu…and you’ll soon see what I am on about. Not only has the fat man’s image replaced that of the Christ child and his cosy little pre-nuclear family, the Green Man, the Christkind and the Happy Badger, but he is slowly warping the minds of children everywhere. Promising them items of value in exchange for their very souls….

And people don’t do a thing about it….