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HindustanTimes Thu,24 Jul 2014

Karan Thapar

The X-mas Files
Karan Thapar
December 26, 2009
First Published: 22:48 IST(26/12/2009)
Last Updated: 22:53 IST(26/12/2009)

If it was a good Christmas you’re probably still recovering from it. The sad truth, to be brutally honest, is that the older you grow the longer it seems to take. But in the end you know you’re over the worst once you start reminiscing. So, in the hope that’s where you are, I’ve dug up a few gems from the net that should warm the cockles of your over-fed and bilious heart.

To begin with here are a collection of things you can only say at Christmas — and many of them are probably said deliberately! As the turkey is being dressed, it wouldn’t be out of place for your mother to say “Stuff it up between the legs as far as it will go!” And, if someone’s reluctant to follow her advice, she could probably explain “Tying the legs together keeps the inside moist.” Later, as the bird goes into the oven, she might shout out “Smother the butter all over the breasts!” Then, as the family impatiently waits, your hungry sister may well ask “How long will it take after you put it in?” and perhaps Dad might innocently answer “You’ll know it’s ready when it pops up.”

And when it’s all done and Granddad has sneaked in for a third helping, Grandma will probably excuse his behaviour by saying “He really does like a good stuffing!” Finally, Dad, who’s more blunt than anyone else, will collapse on the sofa and pronounce “If I don’t undo my trousers, I’ll burst!”

But its not just naughty double entendres that make Christmas special. So too the jokes people bandy about. This year American television seems to have had a field day devising Christmas humour. “The Supreme Court has ruled that they cannot have a nativity scene in Washington DC”, complained Jay Leno. “This wasn’t for any religious reasons. They just couldn’t find three wise men and a virgin.”

David Letterman, however, didn’t have a problem. He found a problem-maker: “I was Christmas shopping and ran into a guy on the street. I noticed his watch and said that it runs slow. He said, ‘So does the guy I stole it from’.”

Not surprisingly, the comments with the most telling edge came from women. Shirley Temple, who became a star whilst still a child: “I stopped believing in Santa Claus when my mother took me to see him in a department store and he asked for my autograph.” Joan Rivers, who knows a thing or two about marriage: “The one thing women don’t want to find in their stockings on Christmas morning is their husband.” And Erma Bombeck: “There’s nothing sadder in this world than to awake Christmas morning and not be a child.”

However, the prize for the most cynical attitude to the Christmas season goes to a London cabbie who once transported me home after a night of excessive carousing. “First you spend a small fortune eating and drinking. Then you spend the next few days in bed recovering from your exertions. Thereafter you spend the rest of the year getting ready to do it all over again. One never learns, does one?”

Oh well, a belated Merry Christmas and an advance Happy New Year!

The views expressed by the  author are personal.


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