There’s more to Father Christmas than meets the eye - and not all of it is good!
’Tis the season to be jolly, as Santa once so rashly said. However, when he was around, anything that wasn’t the Black Death or civil war seemed jolly. In these days of general joy and gaiety (in relative terms to the plague), absolute jolliness is arguably a little harder to come by. Christmas has become expensive, over-commercial, hard work and not always all that easy to enjoy.
This year, for Christmas, we’ve got a general election, which is never going to look good, no matter how much expensive wrapping paper you put it in. It’s like having a vaccination jab on your birthday - it may well be what you need in the long run, but it still takes the shine off your tinsel. It’s certainly doing nothing to dissuade me from my annual immersion in bah humbuggery.
But look at Father Christmas. He’s the one telling us how great Christmas is all the time, yet he makes no secret of the fact that he spends the whole festive period working. By the time he gets back from delivering all the presents, has wiped down the sleigh and brushed off the deer, it’s all over.
He bangs on about how Christmas is all about family. Not wishing to be judgmental, but I’ve heard he’s partial to the odd Christmas Cracker, if you get my (snow) drift, and has a very soft spot for Christmas Carol. Surely it can’t have escaped your notice that every time you see Mrs Claus, she’s an entirely different woman. As he only works one day a year, I reckon he’s got too much time on his hands.
We’re told that Christmas should really be about the baby Jesus and definitely not about coveting everyone else’s far-more-fabulous gifts, but Father Christmas is, of course, all about the presents.
He has sackloads of the things.
You never see him at Midnight Mass. Always says he’s working.
Despite his smiles and amiable persona, he’s quick to judge, often calling other people a ho - sometimes three women at a time. And then there’s his infamous book, in which he lists everyone as either naughty or nice. When I marked everyone in my little black book with a score out of 10, I was told it wasn’t a PC thing to do.
And to everyone’s shame, his busy toy workshops are staffed with child-sized labour working their fingers to the (wish) bone. (Christmas elves are small, you see - geddit? Come on, I’m doing my best here…).
Come January, we’re all worrying that we’re too fat, not fit enough and have drunk too much eggnog and babycham. He, on the other hand, celebrates his enormous belly like it’s his trademark. He revels in his fat cheeks and full-stretch elasticated waistband. At Christmas, while we’re desperately squeezing as many sprouts and roasted parsnips onto the plate as possible, he doesn’t eat a single vegetable, instead having a diet of only cookies and whisky. Give him a carrot and he makes Rudolf eat it. I don’t believe that man has any sort of a regular exercise regime at all.
And he’s the one who says I’m naughty! Every year. So judgmental.
Whatever you’re doing when the ballot boxes have been put into storage, have yourselves a fine festive season of excess and celebration and a fabulous January of regret, remorse and resolution!
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