As the self appointed food critic for Goddamn Media, I have been invited
to write a regular column about all things food (and according to Pasha,
art), so I am going to be documenting my wanderings around the country here for you all to read, events, art, food and general brown sign visitations. I hope to entertain and enlighten you, give you some nice
ideas for dinner and even give you something to chuckle over. Tuck in,
read and enjoy!
This is not about a popular traditional confectionery product. No. It’s about the insane practice of preparing for ONE DAY of the year, months in advance. Ok, I understand why people might want to make a rich fruit cake ready to celebrate the day well in advance as rich fruit cake needs time to mature, but nothing else really needs to be even considered before December 20th at least.
Over a month ago, I was shopping in my local generic supermarket and encountered a “Christmas Chocolate” aisle. Seriously. If I was buying chocolate for Christmas, I wouldn’t buy the fucking stuff in October. It would either get eaten or go off before December. And that’s what they want. They want you to buy it early then stand in front of the special cupboard twitching and fretting until you give in to the temptation and eat it, and then have to go out and buy it all over again. They offer the big tins of chocolates at half price or buy one get 27 free, knowing you’ll succumb to their teasing and eat the lot before the start of November. Or give it away to the little scrounging bastards that come round on October 31st. Don’t even get me STARTED on that topic…
As well as chocolate products, I’ve noticed cheese and meat products on the shelves already, nobody wants them yet, they will go out of date unless you put them in the freezer so what the hell is the bloody point? Half of the fresh food/ready meal section is now completely taken up by “party food”. Who the fuck is having a party now?? Everybody is saving up for fucking Christmas. Now and again I will buy things like cocktail sausages and sausage rolls and pringles and shit, just for an easy Friday night snack fest but it’s not a fucking party and I don’t want a smaller selection of ready meals to make room for battered prawns and spicy potato wedges, just in case somebody wants to have a mid November, trial run Christmas party.
Then it’s the “gifts”. Why buy a lump of cheese and a bottle of wine for a tenner, when you can have a cube of stilton and a miniature bottle of port in a sparkly gift bag for £15? How about a fiver’s worth of European beer for £15 in a specially festive cardboard box? Ooh yes, I’ll have two thanks. Jack Daniel’s playing cards and a miniature bottle for £25? Oh go on then, it’s Christmas. I bought a hot water bottle for my daughter the other day and it came with a plain blue fluffy cover. For a fluffy cover with a snowman or a reindeer on, the exact same cover was an extra £2. What’s the betting by February, the prices would be reversed. Utterly ridiculous.
Actually, talking of Stilton – most people buying expensive cheese would take it back when they opened it up and found out it was all mouldy. Not at Christmas. They don’t want to make a fuss. And it came in nice box with a weeny bottle of wine too. They didn’t have to offer those extras did they? Aren’t they NICE?
And then there are the lights. Our village is usually lit up by now. I suspect that due to the wind and unreliable power, plus the complete lack of work and money in our area means that we are still pretty much in darkness, I suspect within the next week though half of the houses on the main road will be flashing and sparkling and making up for the lack of street lights. Should cut the number of teenagers crashing cars for a month or so which I guess can only be a good thing.
Most big towns and cities have now had the big switch on – my kids went to Peterborough recently to see the lovely Chico do the grand switch on. They should have had Warwick Davis, he’s local and probably doesn’t charge as much as he’s smaller, but Peterborough council clearly have too much money to spend on shiny permatanned “celebrities”. If they all put the lights on early to save money on street lighting, then it might just be acceptable. But that’s not the case. It is TOO FUCKING EARLY for Christmas lights. It’s NOVEMBER. Or Movember… and that I believe merits more attention than Christmas at the moment in my humble opinion. Raising money to raise awareness of prostate cancer is a much better cause than greed and gluttony and corporate money making. If you haven’t already – donate to somebody growing face fuzz in aid of Movember.
Generally the entire thing winds me up. People spending ridiculous amounts of money on fancy wrapping paper and gift tags, expensive “stockings” – (we used to each borrow one of my Dad’s socks, they didn’t sparkle but they were big enough for an apple, an orange and some exciting little wrapped presents), special festive cds, dvds, books – you name it, it’s available in a festive version for twice the normal price and half the normal quality.
Facebook doesn’t help either. “Share this – insert generic festive picture of sad eyed dog with tinsel on head – or 20 babies will cough a lung up on Christmas day” , “Ooh I’ve seen the Coca Cola truck, it must be Christmas!”, “Like if you want my granny’s award winning mince pie recipe”…. FUCK OFF!!!!!!!
I will be celebrating the holiday with my family, I will get advent calendars for the kids, we will have a tree, I will do a lovely roast dinner with all the trimmings but I am not starting it until DECEMBER. LATE December. As that’s when Christmas is.
Happy New Fucking Year to you all.
Probably a good idea if you read about My Supermarket Sweep now...