Christmas comes but once a year, but lasts for bloody months….

I feel incredibly ambivalent about Christmas. On the one hand it can be a truly magical time of year. On the other hand – ach – insert “Bah! Humbuggery” here. I used to spend Christmas on a feminist retreat with the Buddhists. There is nothing like synchronised periods, pins and needles and flatulence for putting the whole thing into a spiritual perspective.

I have just spent the evening wrapping some presents ready for posting tomorrow, and have written one of those tedious round robins which we all wince over every year. Mine of course is a masterpiece of wit and a delightful syllabub of anecdotage and whimsical humour. (Isn’t “whimsical” a word to put dread into anyone’s heart?).

I don’t really need to do it. I have no children, so I cannot impress. (My godmother has genuinely impressive children – a son who travels from country to country telling their Finance Ministries what to do, another who’s about to be a QC and is married to one of Blair’s babes, a third who’s one of the few internet moguls who’s dot didn’t bomb, and the youngest of whom is equally successful in the army. And they are nice people. Which is even more annoying. And since they are all either a couple of years older or younger than me, the whole thing is incredibly insecure-making. I feel utterly worthless on or about December 10th every year. Enough. It is time to draw this bracket to a close.)

Where was I? Oh yes. The Christmas Round Robin. The Entirely-Pointless-in-my-case Christmas Round Robin, though it was useful to be able to tell everyone about my divorce in one fell swoop: “Happy Christmas! Oh, by the way, we’ve split up and I got custody of the Christmas-Card list”.

The thing is, that for the last 8 or so years I have been writing them to hide more than they reveal. Since I strayed from the path of the conventionally married, I have come to regard my private life as being private. Now my life is deliciously and delightfully dull (other than the bits of it that aren’t) so earlier this evening I found myself writing to my distant cousins and my mother’s bridesmaids to tell them that I moved house last year and I joined the WI.

I really have no idea whether or not it’s worth it.

Perhaps I should just send them a link to this blog, or one of those bloody memes, and be done with it.

I think I’ll spend the rest of this month devising a Christmas meme to launch on the 1st of December. That’ll cheer me up. Bitch that I am.

Bah, as I said. Hummmmmmm….BUG.

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11 responses to “Christmas comes but once a year, but lasts for bloody months….

  1. *awaits the Christmas meme with interest

    In my experience, round robin Christmas letters fall into two main categories; those which are interesting, entertaining and witty (which I’m sure AB’s will be) – and those which are dull, smug and self-congratulatory.
    The former have paragraphs and a reasonable size of font – while the latter have tightly packed lines of miniscule font.

    My cousin sends the worst round-robin I’ve ever had the misfortune to read; jam-packed full of tedious smugness and written in the third person. It is referred to in our branch of the family as the Annual Arse Wipe. If only the sender knew how much inadvertent merriment her missive occasions πŸ˜†

  2. My dad did consider sending one once: although he was still annoyed with my change it did give him a nice chance to shock various staid relatives.

    I believe there was a published compendenum of the worst Christmas Round Robins, which was a bit unfair on the people who were in it.

  3. There were lots of comments on the telly this morning about round robins. All this has made me realise that I must be the only person in the world who hand-writes essentailly the same thing into countless christmas cards every year, with more or less detail depending on when I last spoke to the person.

    Last year’s was easy as I sent the wedding thank you cards in november so there wasn’t much new to write in the cards.

    This year will be ‘Knocked down half the house, baby due 11th March’ as I can’t be bothered to do all that writing any more – does this mean I’ve reached the point when people start doing round robins? What brings them on?

  4. Or get J to do it: “knocked down house, knocked up kelli”?

    Perhaps not.

    If it wasn’t for word processors, most of the rest wouldn’t bother.

  5. I really ourght to send my own Christmas cards rather than relying on my parents to put my name on theirs.

    I did a couple of years ago, but then got lazy – too much on around Christmas this year I’m afraid.

  6. πŸ˜€ I think J should do it! You are exactly right! However this would mean that four or five people would get them before christmas – about a third of the list would have been sent by february and he’d swear blind that he sent the rest off in time but six months later I’d find a stack of half-written cards with half-addressed envelopes shoved to the back of a cupboard…

    This actually happened to two of the four thank-you cards it was his responsibility to write. *sigh*

    Actually, now I’m tempted to drawn a picture of a round robin, photocopy it, and send that in the card – and not write anything on it at all. Or would people think I was a bit strange?

    Z – you can always defer them and send Happy Spring cards instead to those people you don’t see but would like to keep in touch with.

  7. Yes that would do it. I don’t want to tell anyone I’m sitting an exam because then they’ll want to know the result and The Family think I pass every exam by showing up and writing anything I want so it will be very embarassing if I fail.

    My Nan is putting me to shame by sending 93 Christmas cards this year, she says funerals don’t cut down her list, because she tends to make new friends at them. I’ve lost touch with everyone I was at school with, and she’s still in touch with most of them.

    She’s only writting about 6 a night because she hasn’t got new glasses yet since her eye surgery – so she’s still partially sighted.

    I suggested she waited until she got the glasses on Thursday but apparently she’ll be too busy after then organaising a ‘send a Christmas card to a political prisoner campagin for Amnesty International’.

  8. Wow, she certainly puts me to shame!

  9. Me too.

    I am being worryingly organised and early this year. Moslty it’s a combination of good intentions and last minute rushes, but I hope to get them out on the 1st or the 2nd.

    The thing is that I moved without telling anyone last year, and though I can and will pick up my post from the flat at various times in December, it would be better to catch people with my not so shiney not so new address before they post theirs.

    Also, I quite fancy receiving some Christmas cards this year.

  10. Mine won’t go out quite that early! I do like multifunctional christmas cards – when we moved a few years ago they were change of addresses too, the year after they were save-the-dates, last year they overlapped with the wedding thank you cards and this year they allow us to tell lots of people when the baby is due.

    All this reminds me that I don’t have either of your new addresses…

  11. Text message sent. πŸ™‚

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