All Wrapped Up

Ebenezer Scrooge: You’re a little absent-minded, spirit.
Ghost of Christmas Present: No, I’m a LARGE absent-minded spirit!

(A Muppet Christmas Carol)

My belt is almost up a notch. That tired, sluggish, not quite with it feeling induced by having consumed Pringles and Celebrations as starters to every meal for a week has kicked in. The rest of the break may as well be sponsored by Rennies. Just how long is it since Christmas again?

Overindulgence amnesia asides, this Christmas has presented some new curious things to ponder. Perhaps they will provide useful knowledge for next year. Perhaps I thought the same thoughts last year. Who knows?

Packaging
The amount of packaging encasing modern stuff is spiralling out of control.

You would expect a Marks and Spencer apple to be individually wrapped in a polystyrene tray and about 250m of shrink-wrap in the olden days, but this was the exception not the rule.

I’m convinced that today’s manufacturers are challenging each other to make the most difficult product to open. And it’s mum and dad that suffer.

This year set a high bar with parents needing a minimum of two screwdrivers, pliers, a junior hacksaw, scissors, mole grips and a Black & Decker Workmate to open the average present on Christmas morning.

“This Christmas was brought to you in association with Tommy Walsh.” He must be laughing all of the way to the bank.

Surprise Batteries
Talking of being ill prepared, who knew that “C” sized batteries are still a thing? Not me.

After a brief panic, I managed to source four used ones, thus avoiding a Christmas Day incident with the Luvabella Doll.

Already tired and emotional after their previous life in a VTech toy, the batteries lasted a day, whereupon the perilous state of charge caused the doll to start talking in French.

Replacement Duracells cost a whacking £8.40 from the local Tesco Metro on Boxing Day morning. This is around £3.40 more than the price that my wife told me that most of the kids’ presents cost. Ho, ho, ho.

A.I. Is Just Creepy
Speaking of Luvabella, don’t bother getting one in the January sales if you’re of a nervous disposition. Within three hours of it appearing, I started calling it Chucky. I swear that it’s out to get me.

Food
It’s not just presents that get all wrapped up for Christmas.

Have you even eaten anything in the last week that hasn’t been wrapped in pastry, cheese or bacon. Or all of the above? I’m amazed that a box of “Heroes” has not yet been made in Wellington form.

Next Christmas, why not make a massive cheese, ham and Cadburys Fudge pastie on Xmas eve and plough through until New Year. All of the Christmas food groups in one and the same net result as every other festive meal. Am I wrong? No.

Away Days
Q: How much stuff do you need to take for a single afternoon or night away visiting family?
A: The exact amount of stuff to completely fill the boot of a Vauxhall Meriva, obviously.

Sadly, the only thing that I wish to achieve before I die remains driving somewhere and being able to see out of the back window. I fear that I may not live that long.

Today is…
Wednesday? Sunday? Nope, sorry. Not a clue.

Bins
Expanding on the above, have you any idea when bin day is? No, neither have the council.

The formula to calculate when to put your bin out over Christmas is so complex that the next volumes of work by Professors Steven Hawkins, Brian Cox and Green are all dedicated to solving it. Probably.

The excellent @mutablejoe off of Twitter got close to working it out a couple of years back;

“Reminder your festive bin collection day is given by the simple equation
d = (√x²-3π) – (∆y – √∆x) – (Gx/∆y)
where x/y are your lat / long”

Simples.

While there’s plenty of lessons learned, one mystery remains unsolved. Where do all of my Swizzles chews off the kitchen table keep disappearing to?

Fin.

This post was first published here, although according to the writer no one actually read It! It’s a feeling that I’m all too familiar with! Anyway, I’m rambling.

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Babysitting The Kids Adventures in parenting. Dad style.

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