What has been annoying The Flamingo Dancer this week:
Handshakes. What is it with handshakes? Why do we shake hands at all? We no longer carry swords and so there is no reason to disarm the sword hand, so what possible service does a handshake provide, other than to transmit germs?
Hugs. I hate hugging. All that, do we touch cheeks, or kiss checks? Yesterday I got hugged by a female friend outside the supermarket. I saw no reason to hug, I hadn’t won a prize, and I wasn’t crying. I didn’t need comfort. I was in fact about to buy Christmas?
Bing Crosby singing “White Christmas” over the supermarket speaker. It is Australia. You can dream all you want about a White Christmas, and the most that will happen is a hail storm, and no one wants one of those, especially on Christmas Day. Wouldn’t it be better to play some relaxation music, so I don’t feel like taking my trolley and ramming it over the family of FIVE SCREAMING CHILDREN who keep crossing my path, even when I jump two aisles to escape them?
Wrapping paper so thin that it tears as I wrap my gifts. I know it is going into the recycling bin on Christmas morning, but I would at least like it to last long enough for me to wrap the present and place it under our tree.
The glorification of Christmas light shows throughout the neighbourhood. It always strikes me that it is probably the family that can least afford the extra power costs that indulge in this habit. Do they know, Virginia, that there is no Santa Clause coming, and if he did he would be on the side of a Coke Cola delivery truck rather than in a sleigh?
Gift giving trees in shopping malls. You know, those trees that department stores set up in the anticipation that they will guilt us all into spending extra, in their department store of course, for people in need. Now, don’t get me wrong, I think we should all support charity, and no better time than Christmas, but wouldn’t it be better to donate money to a real charity to use where it is really needed? Not making shareholders richer. (Here I do have to admit that on more than one occasion when our children were younger we did in fact buy for the gift tree, but have in more recent times seem the capitalist star on the tree and donated to charity instead).
People who have moved during the year, but neglect to write their address on the back of their Christmas card so that you can return a card to them. More than once I have had to play sleuth and search through whitepages.com.au for what I suspect might be their address on the few hints they gave in their card.
People who say they will only send a card if someone sends them a card first, and then complain on Christmas Day about how few people sent them cards. My mother has fallen into this trick for a number of years. Now the family insists that she sends cards first, and we take turns writing them for her, to the extent that she only has to sign them. Now she complains about the handwriting of the ageing card senders, who these days find it hard to breathe let alone write!
People who complain that they “just can’t get into the Christmas spirit this year”. Why do we even expect to? We spend weeks being told to hurry up and finish our shopping, which most people ignore, then we plan huge complicated meals we have neither the energy nor ability to cook, to serve to people that we are not altogether sure we want to spend an entire day with. Try it with 33C summer heat and no air conditioning. No wonder the murder rate goes up at Christmas! More than one Christmas I have looked at the carving knife with strong desire.
Silly ecards of cute puppies and kittens waiting for Santa and looking disappointed. Then Santa arrives, Surprise! I got one today that had the puppy eat all the cookies off the plate except for one, which Santa ate when he left a bone. If I had known Santa would settle for dog biscuits I would have changed my offerings years ago.
The dramatic grieving, chest beating and wailing that is taking place in North Korea. See, that is what happens when you worship your leader and not the God Capitalism. That is never going to happen in a western country where most of us would be happy to send our leaders to sea in a leaky boat in a bad storm. Watching grown men in military uniform blubbering is kind of fun I must admit, but the fact that these people have a finger on a nuclear bomb does causes one to pause in concern though. Let’s hope that someone gives them some happy juice and soon.
Why does it seem that so many British people appearing on television can’t pronounce their r. I have just been listening to a British presenter talk about Euwope. Euwope. He said it every second sentence. Euwope. Maybe we should send him to North Kowea to cheew up the cywing. The r affliction does seem to be endemic in the British. Is it because of inbreeding? (I am told that my parents were not related, but their grandparents may very well have been… it happens when you can only marry someone who lives within an afternoon’s horse ride!)