A white Christmas? Oh no you don’t, say the experts. But someone has a cunning plan
You’d be forgiven for thinking 2020 has all been a dream - an eye-rubbing, is-this-real experience to end all eye-rubbing, is-this-real experiences. So no surprise, then, that our glorious leaders are ensuring the year draws to a close in utter chaos.
Celebrate, they said. Have a merry little Christmas, between the 23rd and 27th of December. But whatever you do, don’t go anywhere. Or see anyone. In fact don’t even look at anyone. Unless it’s on zoom. Assuming that new variant (shall we call it Covid-19-and-a-half) can’t hack in to your wifi, of course.
But, you know, I sort of get it. I’m used to the fact now that we’re being governed by a bunch of gibbering idiots and that we shouldn’t really expect any better. I mean, “people must remain cautious and vigilant” say No.10. But, vigilant of what? Are a couple of those big, scary virus cells with their spikey proteins gonna jump out from behind a bush and mug you while on a Boxing Day walk with the dog? Just what are they talking about?
Thank heavens, then, that we were able to rely on the usual suspects from Fleet Street to brighten up our lives with their annual IT’S GOING TO BE A WHITE CHRISTMAS front-page splashes. A nice way to end a hellish 2020. Or rather it would’ve been.
In a year when competition has been, shall we say, a tad fierce, the award for biggest killjoy of the year must surely go to the BBC and the Met Office for their nicely timed climate change doom-mongering a week or so ago.
On to our screens they marched, for an episode of Panorama, just as we were trying to put all the misery behind us. Just as we were adding the finishing touches to the tree, switching on the fairy lights and tucking into the first mince pie of the season. Just as we were dreaming of a white Christmas, like the ones we never really knew, if we’re honest, but have always hoped for anyway.
But no. Oh no you don’t. You think you can just sit there in your slippers and your lounge pants, praising be for the vaccine, heaving a big sigh of relief at making it through to the end of the year? Well ‘ave some o’ this: THE END IS NIGH! they declared. For sledging, snowmen and snowball fights at Christmas, that is. It’s warmer, wetter winters for you now.
Well thanks for that. Thanks a lot. Nice one.
"It's really frightening," added Dr Lizzie Kendon, a senior Met Office scientist (like we need to hear from more scientists right now). "It's a wake-up call.”
Well guess what, Liz? We’re wide awake. We have been since March.
Oh, and of course… it’s all our fault. For having the temerity to put the heating on. Our fault (never theirs, you’ll notice) for warming the planet by enough degrees to kill off Frosty and Parson Brown and sending shivers down the spine of the Bing Crosby Estate.
The worst thing is, Panorama isn’t even presented by Martin Bashir any more. So it must be true.
In case you missed the laugh-a-minute catastrothon on telly, the following day the BBC website was full of pictures of happy-go-lucky kids of a few years ago, enjoying japes on toboggans, captioned with things like “Ha ha! They’ll never do this again” and “You’ve ruined their lives, you selfish git”. Or words to that effect.
But… Hang on everybody. Don’t give up on the dream just yet. Coz I’ve got a solution.
Yep, that’s right. Little old me. I’ve gone and solved it. And here’s my plan: we do nothing.
No, come on. Hear me out. I mean, we literally do nothing. For a month. We stop the clocks, leave the calendars alone, let the days tick by and wait. Wait until the 1st February 2021, and simply call it the 1st January instead.
Think about it. By pushing everything back a month, the 1st December 2021 will fall on what would’ve been the 1st January 2022. And every December after that will occur during what was once the month of January. The month when we take down the tree, pack the decks away, drop the kids off at school and traipse back to work, just as what happens? Just as it starts to sodding well snow, that’s what.
Well not any more. Because next year it’ll be December, not January. And by the time the 25th comes around, it’ll be deep and crisp and even everywhere.
Which is how it used to be, of course. Hence the snowy Christmas cards, ditties about winter wonderlands, and reindeer pulling sleighs.
So what changed? Well, okay, it warmed up a bit. I’ll give you that. But I’m more inclined to point the finger of blame at the idiot who came up with the one extra day every four years - Professor Leap, or whatever his name was. I reckon he got his sums wrong, to the tune of about a month every couple of thousand years.
If only the scientists would just stick to their test tubes and their bunsen burners.
Anyway, that’s my plan. Get Christmas done. Get Brexit done. Then cancel everything for a month. After all, it’s not like January 2021 is shaping up to be a barrel of laughs, is it?
A mutton for punishment, Black Sheep welcomes all comments. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to air your points of view. You can also read Black Sheep in Welsh Border Life every month. When it's back.