Come on you can do this. You've been to creative writing classes. You've had three books published and a shed load of articles. It's only a Christmas letter. What do you mean pressure? You've done this for thirty years. This is no time to hit the wall. It's not like taking a penalty in a World Cup final.
know you never missed a penalty in all your football career but ask
yourself, how many did you take? You didn't score them, you scored
readers (by which we mean expensive and yes we have moved from first
person singular to plural we do that, if it's good enough for Luke
it's good enough for us), possibly you will have come across our
Christmas letter before. You know how the film director doesn't
always tell you everything in the first ten minutes and leaves you to
relax and trust that all will be revealed. That.
we were sitting in a bar in... Oh for goodness sake that was going to
be a dull sentence. But actually it has been a pretty routine year.
It's had its moments (show your children correct apostrophe use
please). Mainly sitting in bars, pubs, inns, taverns, cellars. (Don't
show them full-stop or verb use.)
church sponsored a beer at the Nailsea Beer and Cider festival and
then we took advantage of sponsors' tickets to do a lot of sampling.
The Rev'd James, in case you wondered. It good luvely nice more yes
dear I'll take my dog collar off soon there ping off goes collar dog.
our community had no sense of community we put a lot of church
people-power into running the first ever Trendlewood Community
Festival. The sun shone, the burgers sold out, the beer and cider
flowed (spotted a theme yet?), the police dogs chased fake criminals
across the field, we had a juggling workshop and live music. Classic
cars appeared from garages on the estate. It scored high on the
communing, communicating, communal... It were ace.
season at the Tobacco Factory gave us 2 G of V (with a real dog
stealing the show) and Richard III (with a head in a bag dripping
blood stealing the show).
a response to being sent Jono as intern for a year we went to his
home to say thank you and for Steve to preach for our friends Mike
and Debbie. Morecambe is a long way from Nailsea. We had to give Jono
back in September. Future interns welcome. Musical virtuosity
year for comedy. We laughed at Milton Jones (brilliant audience
control), Robin Ince, David
O'Doherty and Bill Bailey.
live music for Liz but Steve caught Dweezil Zappa (playing his Dad's
music) and Steve Mason (ex Beta Band).
vacancy in see (no bishop, to you and me) led to the future
post-holder being referred to as Bishop Kevin. Much disappointment
followed when Kevin turned out to be another Peter. We've had 1 and 2
Peter for the last few years so at least John, Jude or Revelation
would have felt more systematic.
sentences that look as if they might be funny but aren't. That's the
point. Steve likes the idea of jokes only a very select few
understand. Hi Mum, by the way.
on the basis of Liz's south-west area role for a famous homestore
chain we would like to say that when the country was being divided up
there were probably wildebeest in the North Sea. When she was area
manager for the Thames Valley about ten years back she announced,
using a joke her husband had written specially for her conference
speech, that the hardest job of the year had been re-routing the
Thames (given that the area included Fareham and Southampton).
Tumbleweed is still blowing through that audience a decade on so
hubbie was sacked as script writer and was therefore unable to
crowbar any geographical jokes into the speech that reported on the
south-west including Basingstoke, Chichester, Fleet and Tromsk.
(Small lie in that list, did you spot it?)
bosses have as short a career as West Brom managers. The latest
manifestation departed after several months of a style best summed up
as confusing. It at least resolves the problem of said woman having
the same name as a key member of our church and the wrong person
getting a vitriolic email - or worse, her boss rotad to do the coffee
was also sacked as fantasy football team manager (is this a first?)
when Aston Tilla recorded a record low score for a weekend given that
the whole side was either injured, incompetent or West Brom. Sold
Shane Long just before he went on a scoring spree and managed no
points from the Liverpool Everton 3-3 draw given that all our players
we write junior 1 is on a Caribbean cruise with his girlfriend
Rachel's family (good work my son) and junior 2 and girlfriend
Carys are mainly running huge distances and being frighteningly fit
and competent at it. Junior 2 did add to his collection of head scars
by falling into a desk at work. The new one puts the ones junior 1
inflicted upon him with golf club and garage door to shame.
do you mean these sentences are too long?
lovely Andy, our next door neighbour for the past seven years, died
in the summer. Steve was able to take the funeral at which, amongst a
few startling revelations, we found out he wasn't called Andy. It was
an army nickname that stuck because of his initials AND.
bought a new tree that is not a crab apple, saw a mouse on the bird
feeders and had the Red Arrows fly over although they may have been
off to somewhere else.
took up doing Thought for the Day for Radio Bristol and after about
fifteen goes managed to be interesting by broadcasting from a lay-by
on the A370 due to an accident up ahead. That was TFTD and traffic
news. Since it worked he asked if he could do them from his bed in
future. No such luck.
about seven letters turning everything down Lloyds Bank agreed they
had mis-sold us PPI. Have now received compensation for both the key
financial products we purchased when times were hard. It's a
complicated way of saving.
special friends this year have been Riverford Veggie Box deliveries,
the Battle Axes at Wraxall, #SCD, #Eurovision (both these things
better watched with the Twitter feed streaming) and two new Gozitan
restaurants we found.
joined Twitter and Facebook after years of moaning about how much
time it took up. She works it in somehow. Amazing eh?
you don't land upon your head and get sleighed, slayed or Slade.
Please don't own a Christmas jumper. Ever. Hope you find this. The
card list has been reduced dramatically due to laziness.