Tuesday, 25 December 2012

How to be the perfect Christmas guest

 As you know, every Christmas I hold my Grand Christmas Party. I open my home to one and all – “mi casa es su casa”, as they say.

Putting on the year's most anticipated feast is a feat of superelephant endeavour.

The invitation even extends to the Badfort Crowd, as part of our annual Christmas truce.

There's a delicate art to being the perfect holiday guest.

However, judging from the day’s events, it is clear that some people need advice on the etiquette of being a Christmas houseguest.

1) Should you find yourself as a bona-fide houseguest for the day take a moment to revel in your good fortune. Your only job is to turn up and be fed. I always provide a veritable feast, unparalleled in the whole of Homeward. Unlike Mig, my cook, you don't have to be up at 5am peeling spuds. He is a veritable artiste in the renowned technique of roasting them with a blowtorch. Therefore, it would seem somewhat unkindly to moan about the fact you prefer them parboiled in Black Tom.

2) What to bring? If you insist on bringing food make sure that it is something that everyone might enjoy. A crate of oily Scob Fish is unlikely to enhance a culinary repast – especially if you insist on scoffing them all yourself as a between courses snack !

It is true that everyone enjoys Whooshmeat with apple and sage stuffing – but, if you insist on bringing it to my party, here's a handy tip: check the best-before date. That way, it avoids half my guests ending up in the infirmary on the big day.

3) Alcohol – A drop of port is always welcome at Christmas, but a barrel of Black Tom? If you insist on bringing such a lethal intoxicant have the good grace not to guzzle it down as if it were lemonade and insist on singing a chorus of “Uncle, the Fat Tyrant”

4) Warn your host well in advance (months, not minutes) of any genuine food allergies. For the record, an aversion to Brussels sprouts is not a medical condition. Don’t also then claim that “capitalist pachyderms” bring you out in rash whenever they “vainly boast about their pathetic achievements”.

5) You need to learn the huge importance of pacing. Have a bit of everything, but don't gorge yourself on the Stingo Steak. No one likes a guest who can't handle their pudding or has to loosen their sackcloth robe halfway through lunch. Also, while we are on the subject of said sackcloth garments – would it have been so difficult to wear clean ones? Don’t shovel your food. Don’t wipe your hands on other people. Have your share but not everyone else’s. Don’t make body noises e.g. belching. Try not to be "heads down" as if at the trough. No "taking" food off someone else's plate

6) Don’t cackle, screech and guffaw during my Christmas broadcast.

7) Don’t offer to do the washing up if Hitmouse is incapable of seeing grease and encrusted food on the back of plates. Also, don’t stick all my silverware in a large sack and claim that you need to take it home to give it a really good polish. Especially, if it is later discovered in the local pawnbroker and I have to pay out an exceedingly large amount of money to redeem it.

8) Having forked out for crackers at more than £20 a pop, I don’t take kindly to being peppered with ballistic plastic thingymajiggies fired from illicit catapults which, given Christmas Day is supposed to be a truce day, should have been handed in before you passed my threshold!

9) If offered leftovers to take home, accept them with grace – don’t say “Thanks, Lardy – we know you like to play the big philanthropist but it’s the least you owe us for turning up to another of your boring parties!”

I am sure that, unlike the Badfort Crowd, you need none of this advice.

Merry Christmas to you all!

Friday, 21 December 2012

Train Trouble

One on my favourite songs, at this time of year, is the rendition of 'Rockin' around the Christmas Tree' by Kim Wilde and Mel Smith.

It certainly gets one in the Christmas spirit!

Unfortunately, it has been known for people to somewhat over indulge in spirit of an alcoholic nature during the festive season and I am very much afraid that Miss Wilde has been led astray by the Badfort Crowd.

I thought it a rather excellent idea to hire the services of the young lady to entertain the dwarfs during their long journeys on my switchback railway to from from my mines.

A little Christmas divertissement, if you will.

Once again, the Badfort Crowd are doing their best to traduce Christmas.

Sadly, they plied the poor girl with copious amounts of Black Tom and it rather went to her head.

The poor dwarfs did not know where to look as she belted out some rather inebriated versions of her hits.

I suppose one has to accept a little raucous behaviour at Christmas but am somewhat saddened to see this nightingale, so long a paragon of virtue, slip from grace.

The End is Nigh

Well, as we now know the world did not come to and end at 11.11 GMT, as prophesied by the ancient Mayan civilisation.

I predict that a number of badgers will be furious.

The Badfort Crowd took it upon themselves to promote awareness of the approach of the coming apocalypse - claiming Badfort to be the only spot on Earth expected to survive a coming global Doomsday.

They promised that anyone who sought shelter would be treated to copious kegs of Black Tom and portions of Scobfish pie - then at the appointed hour they would all be allowed to enter the rocket that had been prepared and be able to leave the planet when the world ended.

I have been keeping an eye on proceedings. I spotted the Badfort Crowd, early this morning, filling a large hole with a substantial amount of gelignite. There shortly followed a large explosion.

The ground shook, and a large numbers of badgers, seeing it as a portent and in fear of their lives, ran for shelter in Badfort.

They were soon inebriated on Black Tom.

Whilst the badgers toasted the kindness of Beaver Hateman, I kept an eye on the comings and goings of the Badfort Crowd through my binoculars.

Suffice to say, it did not take me long to spot Hateman and his cronies carrying xmas presents, flat screen televisions and other household objects, in procession from the now deserted burrows.

I fear that a number of badgers will now have a rather miserable Christmas due to their gullibility.