Latest Score: Christmas 0 Birthday 1

27 days until 25th December. Christmas is not my favourite thing, for one thing it overshadows my birthday. Already there is the overhype in tv adverts, selection boxes and neighbour is pitched against neighbour in the contest to have the tackiest Christmas lights. You might have seen this story – a world record. Stupidly, they said that half a million lights was a nice round number, when they have 502,165. Guys…..listen…….a better round number is ZERO. Hope you paid for all that with a loan from – at least you won’t be able to do it next year.

Me, I am looking forward to a short period off work, but sometimes I feel that being at work would be more bearable. I don’t look forward to the whole let’s get all stuffed and burp, fart and fall asleep in front of tv programmes that we would never watch if it was any other time of year. True, there can be decent films on here and there, but I’m not in the least bit interested in the Queen’s Speech (but I would still like an OBE, ma’am), carol singing or putting out cookies for Santa and carrots for his reindeer.

Even my birthday on 23rd is blighted by Christmas. The one chance in the year I get to have an individual celebration. Going out for a birthday meal? Let’s have Slade, Jona Lewie and John Lennon ‘Happy Xmas War is Over’ in the background. Not bad songs, but they will be the 500th time you’ve heard them this month. Would you like the seat by the Christmas tree, sir? Oh, and look, there are some carol singers. Aaaaggggggggh. The meaning of Christmas – that’ll be a quid to get rid of your squawking outside my door and you can go and stuff yourself with sweets and worsen the obesity crisis. My future pension reduced further in order to invest more in the NHS. A double whammy if ever there was one – paying kids to reduce my pension.

Right, that’s out of my system. Ok, not quite. No, I don’t want presents, I don’t want cards, if you are tempted, please buy something for Pammy, something for Matt or a donation to charity – it doesn’t even have to be my charity, perhaps one to help the homeless. But don’t spend loads and loads of money on your children because they must have the same gadgets that all their friends have and then bleat about personal debt. You can’t blame the bankers for that.

What will Christmas mean to me? Not going to work for a couple of weeks and plenty of walking. This is the last real chance to string together a string of successive days to really prepare. Somewhat dependent on the weather, but it should only be snow that keeps me inside. For the other 18 hours a day, I hope to be with my Pammy and my Matty.

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