Well that's it more or less... The first part of the annual seasonal mayhem is done and dusted and now we only have the bringing in of the new year left before it's back to normal. To those who have worked all over Christmas commiserations and to those who managed time with family and friends, I hope you had a peaceful and enjoyable time. No doubt the January credit card bills will evidence the type of celebration you enjoyed?
I am one of those bah humbug types who can't wait for January to be well and truly in place and the thoughts of the Christmas celebrations a distant memory! Some would say this miserably mentality is due to me being a grumpy old git however, after years of working at this time of year, before and during my police career, I suppose I have seen what people can be really like, warts and all! So many years of clearing up other peoples mess is bound to take it's toll.
The whole concept of Christmas has been lost and, it doesn't matter whether you are a religious type person or not. Certainly the celebration of the birth of Christ couldn't be further from the minds of many, even those who purport to be followers of a religion that believes in the story. No, Christmas appears to have sunk to the depths of depravity. Peace on earth and goodwill to all men appears (at least in the UK) to have been lost in a cloud of commercialism and alcohol fueled indulgence and violence.
Despite months of scare mongering about inflation and financial hardship the retail industry were predicting their bigest ever Boxing Day Sales. It appears from recent news reports that their expectations may have been well founded?
We now have "drunks-only" ambulances dubbed Booze Buses in many city areas to deal with widespread drunkenness and, a Newsnight alcohol special recently covered many of the issues associated with the Booze Britain culture. But why is it that by far the largest group of problem boozers on the lash in our town centres is often young women? Well, according to medical research, testosterone - the hormone connected to male characteristics such as aggression and sex drive - rises in women by up to 50% when they get drunk. In men, it falls!
So we've been told we couldn't afford Christmas but we still got pissed. We were told our money will buy less but we went mental at the sales and, our houses are dropping in value for the 2nd month running so what's next? Apparently 2008 will bring bleak prospects for the UK job market? Perhaps it's time to give up work and join the welfare state spongers where we can all be better off? Apparently going out to work does not pay!
So did I enjoy Christmas? Am I looking forward to the next one?
In the great words of Shane MacGowan... Happy Christmas your arse. I pray God it's our last!