Anyway my sweeties, how's your belly for spots? Mine's fine; full of Arnotts Tim Tams and a nice cuppa tea. As you may have gathered from the previous paragraph, I'm not a fan of the western world's customs of christmas and new year. I've survived (sometimes barely) the appalling charade of the "festive season" 67 times and it's made me somewhat cynical and very weary. The false bonhomie, the spending, the eating and drinking orgies, the overindulgence of children as present piles on present, the mounting debt and the waste. Oh, please don't get me started on the waste! All the paper, plastic, cardboard and food that is discarded is appalling and even more so when two thirds of the world's people are undernourished or starving to death. It's so disgusting I can't stand it and I can't understand why everybody else can't stand it. People in the western world really have no inkling about the meaning of giving and seasonal celebrations and, until they do, every advert, nay every purchase, should be followed by a loud announcement saying, "Every time a cash register rings, somewhere in the world a child dies." The people in the checkout queue in the supermarket did not appreciate me saying this on the 23rd December, 2013. They all looked at me as if I was the misanthrope!
Next time I think I'll have a big sandwich board made with the words, "Every time a cash register rings, somewhere in the world a human being dies", written on the front and back, then Rosie
and I can parade up and down outside major supermarkets and department stores. Ha ha ha . . . it could be fun and should put one old woman and little dog among the fat cats! (Much better than sacrificing a pigeon.) I wonder how long it would be before they called the cops?
Oh, by the way, if you ever meet any designers or manufacturers of wrapping paper, please smack their hands and face for me. The smack to the hands is to remind them that, if they insist on continuing in this useless and unnecessary occupation, every design should incorporate lines to make the cutting of the paper easier. The smack to the face is to jog their memory that making the paper too thin so it has to be doubled in order to cover a present, because a single thickness ALWAYS tears, (yes, I'm shouting!) does not endear them to the general public.
I give the grand kids gifts on their birthdays and at christmas and this year I'm making them all a shiny material pillow case with their name embroidered on the front. I'll tie it up with a ribbon at the top so they can still have the pleasure of opening something, it will just be the same something each time (the wrapping not the present). I can stop wrestling with paper, scissors and sticky tape that ends up in the bin and me as a gibberish mess. Instead, I'll sit back and bask in an environmentalist glow and send money to World Vision Australia.
Well, would you look at that? I've outed myself as a bleeding heart. How fabulous and so much better than being a heartless sod.
Still, bleeding heart or not, I'll leave it until next time to tell you why I have a problem with the approach the charitable organisations have towards the twin evils of abject poverty, ill health and death. On that cheery note, I take my leave.