Ah Christmas! That most wonderful time of the year. When you panic a lot, spend a lot and eat yourself into oblivion topping it all off with a river of alcohol and self-loathing but, hey, at least A Muppet Christmas Carol is on and you’ll probably be gifted some pleasing socks.
We at The Evening Harold feel your pain and we’ve got your back; so each day we’ll be counting down to Christmas by providing you with a tip to make life easier and take the stress out of the coming days.
Right, we’re off to pour Baileys over a handful of milk chocolate reindeers and eat the result while watching The Box of Delights.
Merry Christmas, and as Tiny Tim said: “are you mad Mister Scrooge? That prize turkey is the same size as me, it’ll take a day to cook and we’re so poor we’ve only got a hotplate.”
Have a lovely advent.
The Evening Harold Team
One: A tip for elderly readers. Why not send Christmas cards early this year to avoid your relatives worrying that you might be dead? This will save them the trouble of having to call or visit.
Two: Free-range turkey too expensive? Why not buy a normal frozen one and give it the run of your garden as a treat before Christmas?
Three: Accidentally eaten all of the chocolates out of your son’s advent calendar already? Just throw it away then, he’s not interested in the pictures.
Four: Have your blazing row with your spouse now so the kids won’t associate it so strongly with Christmas day.
Five: Don’t enjoy brussel sprouts? Don’t cook any with your Christmas dinner then. It’s not like you’re going to starve without them is it?
Six: To do Christmas cards properly you need to be organised and have lots of money and a pen that works. Above all, you need neat, legible handwriting. If you can’t be arsed with all that, simply put up a Facebook status saying “I’m not sending Christmas cards this year. I’m thinking about the environment.” For extra impact, add a picture of a really cute beaver.
Seven: If you’re sending someone a rubbish present out of a sense of duty, use velcro instead of sellotape to wrap it. It makes ‘re-gifting’ much easier.
Eight: It’s the time of year when figs and dates suddenly appear. Before you gorge, think it through.
Nine: If you live in a flat, or a house without a chimney, avoid awkward questions from your children about how Santa gets in by simply explaining to them that he isn’t real.
Ten: Taking your children to see Santa in a shopping centre? Ensure you’re not wasting your time with an impostor by marching straight to the front of the queue and attempting to remove his beard. (courtesy of Brendan Kiernan)
Eleven: Can’t afford to lavishly decorate the outside of your house? Repeatedly call for an ambulance, or claim you’ve got burglars: the flashing blue lights add a lovely dash of Christmas cheer.
Twelve: There’s no harm in opening one of those bottles early, you know, just to check it’s ok like. If it is, you can get some more in later.
Thirteen: Don’t be tempted to go to a festive carol service. They’re normally shit.
Fourteen: Christmas dinner can take ages to prepare and cook but if you do it drunk enough then time will magically speed up and you’ll be sitting down to eat before you know it.
Fifteen: If you’re not one for Christmas shopping don’t fret. Don’t buy anyone anything and just make sure that as you go downstairs on Christmas morning your first words are ‘Shit we’ve been burgled’. Enjoy the rest of the festive period getting sympathy and an insurance payout.
Sixteen: Ensure there are enough chairs for all of your family this Christmas by not inviting all of your family for Christmas. Even if they live with you.
Seventeen: Avoid broken toy disappointment this Christmas by not letting your children play with their new toys. They can look at them, but not take them out of the packaging. This will also help their resale value. (courtesy of Jon-Paul Murrow)
Eighteen: To get a genuine response to the jokes in your Christmas crackers replace them with something extremely racist.
Nineteen: Don’t merely recycle your empty beer bottles, soak them in hot water and ease off the labels. A quick polish and you’ve a lovely vase and a head start on next year’s Christmas presents too.
Twenty: Don’t be tempted to buy a gorgeous pedigree puppy for your kids this Christmas. The shelters will be giving them away by Boxing Day, you could save a fortune.
Twenty-One: Distressed at the thought of visitors making a smell? Put a roll of Izal in the downstairs loo to discourage shitting.
Twenty-Two: Elderly relatives who claim ‘Christmas isn’t the same these days’ can be chastised by giving them a satsuma and a walnut. And then putting them in a home.
Twenty-Three: People will happily eat anything if you tell them you bought it from Marks & Spencer.
Twenty-Four: Ignore your family and go online where all the sales start early. There’s only 365 days left until you have to give them presents again so get shopping before it’s too late.