- Xmas Cards -

Shit I hate it when bastards send you Christmas Cards and you've had no intention of sending them one. And it's one of those cheap ones that cost about 2 cents each, the profits of which go to some charity like the Arabian Testicle Fund or something, a completely pointless gesture. And then I get to thinking, does this bugger send cards to everyone, or are they singling me out for some special attention because they want something from me. And if they want something, what is it, and if they get it, will they bugger off and leave me alone?

And then, the NEXT year I think "Should I send that bastard a card this year in anticipation that they will AGAIN send me an unsolicited card like the peice of shit that they are; and if they don't, will I look like a real dork sending them one?"

SHIT I hate that!

Then I have a big conscience vote in my head because I don't know if I should send them a card back (late), and if I don't, are they waiting for the mailman every day with a huge bottle of aspirins that they're going to tip back if no card arrives? Or will they just hate me forever, and if they do, can I deal with that or not?

Or maybe I hate their guts, and they know it, and they're sending me a card because they know it'll really churn me up inside and make me feel like a real peice of human dog-shit because I don't want to reply.

So maybe I send them a card, and like I don't know what to say, because the only thing I can remember about them is that they ran down my cat 10 years ago, so I have to say something pathetic like "Dear Niall, have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year" when I'd really like to say something like "Niall, you chunk of shit, just don't think I've forgotten what you did to my cat, and I'VE got a car now, and I'm gunning for you and your wimpy siamese, so next time you step out on the street you better be praying, that's all I've got to say!"

So I start to use the "Merry Christmas" message (cos my conscience has won out) and then I realise that that's exactly the same bloody message as is printed in the card, so now it'll look like "Dear Niall, HAVE A MERRY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year" so I tear up the card because if I scribble it out, they're going to know I stuffed up, and if I try and cover it up, they're going to think I'm *really* cheap, re-using one of those cheap cards.

Then I realise it's the last bloody card I had, so I have to go down to the shop to get another one, only they're out of the cheap ones and the only ones they have left cost about a million bucks each and have glitter ALL OVER the front, and are 10 times better than what I'd send to my girlfriend even, so I HAVE to bloody buy one, and then I wonder what will the hated one think when they get the thing - will they think that all is forgiven (like hell) and come round on Christmas Day for a reconciliation and run down my new cat cos it's nine years old now and can't get out of the way of cars so good any more. So I have to write something at the bottom that means "Have a Merry Christmas but don't ever come around because I would've got a cheap card if I could've"

Eventually, I find a message rough enough to do, and send it off, then the girlfriend comes round and sees all this glitter all over the place and asks where it came from. I tell her it's off a card and she goes apeshit saying that I never sent her one like that, hers was one of those 2 cent ones from Father Margaret's Sex Therapy Clinic, and so I have to lie and tell her it was for my parents. Then I remember that she's coming around for Christmas Dinner and she'll look for my card, so I have to send the folks one to cover up, so I go down to the shop and buy another card, exactly the same as the last, with glitter and everything, except I have to hock off all my valuables to pay for it, and THEN the girlfriend surprises me with a present, then sees the card and now she's REALLY angry because A. I lied to her, and B. I must have a "peice of skirt" on the side. She's running around screaming and I can't hear myself think and so I just tap her on the shoulder to calm her down, only I miss her shoulder and hit her on the head instead, and wouldn't you know it, I had the claw hammer in my hand and so she's face down on the rug, dead, and now I'm really pissed off cos I bought a card for nothing! And I'm down a girlfriend too! Shit!

So now I've got to try and hide the body, and ISN'T IT ALWAYS THE WAY? About 2 years ago I had bags and bags of hydrated lime and I thought, "I'll never use these" and gave them away, and bugger me if as soon as you get rid of something you need it again.

So I don't enjoy my Christmas cos everyone's asking me where my girl- friend is, including the police and I'm hoping that the new fishpond I put in stays in place, if you know what I mean.



- Xmas Presents -

- Shopping Blues -

And now I'm trying to buy a present, and I'd like one that would cost about, say $5 but looks like it costs $75 so that people really think that I'm made of money and successful and things, so I'm going to all the bargain places where you can buy weird things like "The Last Supper" pictures that are almost perfect except that they're all eating loaves of bread with wrappers on that say "Best Before 1-Jan-0000" and fishes with Mercury Poisoning notes stamped on the sides.

So I'm cruising through these places, looking at the weirdest collection of crap known to humankind, and I've got maybe 2 hours left to go because I thought I'd already sorted this person out, but discovered at the last minute that I'd forgotten them after all.

And I'm running through my mind everything I've ever known about them, what their hobbies are etc, and trying to match them with the stuff on the shelves - "Now let's see, Horseriding. Do you use eggbeaters at Horseriding? No. Netball? No. Well, she is a woman.. No, can't get anything that reinforces a sexual stereotype, I decided that already. Ok, next, a refill bag of Vacuum Cleaner Bags. Nope! Um, what's that? Hair Dye? NO! Who'd want to turn their hair that colour?"

So I wander around and around talking to myself and people are noticing, but I've got no idea, I just keep on mumbling and noticing that the shop is empty and that a White Van with "Department of Mental Health" on the side has pulled up outside the shop. I find the ideal present, a set of Horse- Brushes, marked down because they last about 10 minutes, made in some 3rd world country that the West is keeping poor by demanding loan repayments for the $47.50 they lent them 17 years ago, which is now worth $99 Billion and is IMPOSSIBLE to pay back; and I'm just heading to the counter with it when WHAM, I get one of those TAZER darts in the back and the last thing I sense is the smell of the flesh in the small of my back as it burns away.

I wake up 2 hours later in the Drooling Academy and this Doctor's trying to get me to sign a form saying that I love my mother, except the way it's worded it means I REALLY love my mother, and I tell him to get stuffed, and he switches on the ECT machine.

2 hours later I wake up at it's 1am Xmas morning, and the doctor says he's got a present for me, and he switches on the machine again, except higher this time because it's a special day.

3 hours later my brother arrives and he's pissed off with me as he was waiting in the car-park of Third World General, and thought I'd done a runner with the girl behind the three-legged pantyhose counter. He gets me out of the hospital by faking my signature on the form about my mother, and we head off to find a Christmas Present. Everything's closed now except for a couple of Service Stations on the Highway, so we drive out there and stop at the first one. Nothing. So we stop at the second one. Still Nothing. I'm getting desperate now, because if I don't get something I'm going to look like a lower form of life than Plankton, and I've got bugger all money left, and the Credit Card Company has registered my card as one of the "Shoot-To-Kill $50 Retreival Bonus" types, that they usually reserve for Bikies or Panamanian Psychopaths, so the third Service Station has got to be the winner...

We get inside, and it's like wall-to-wall perverts assortment, and the present is for my sister so I'm buggered if I'm going to buy the crotchless panties, so all that's left is something in the car line. In the end I get her a tow-rope, which she can use as an emergency bridle. (It doesn't matter how poor the excuse is, as long as I have one.)

Xmas Day

So we all go home to the parents place for one of those at-home affairs where all the wrinkles show up and dribble all over your cards, and the presents get passed out. Everything's going well till my sister gets the present - she opens it and straight away I know she doesn't think the same way as I do. She just says "Oh!, How useful, Thanks Simon", in the same voice as people usually reserve for thanking vets for putting down their poor old pooch. So now I know I've committed a social error, and next year I'm going to get a purple toilet brush holder or something equally useless unless I make up for it with her birthday present.

"Stuff her", I think, "What did I get?", and I'm hoping that everyone else had stacks of time to shop and lots of money to spend. So I open the first one, and sure enough, it's a shirt, 23 sizes too small, and just right for my younger brother (who always gets half my presents anyway, and always will, even when we're sucking soup through straws at the old folks home. I cut my losses and think "What the hell, at least I suppose I'm at home with the family", only during tea I'm getting ECT aftershocks and I'm forgetting who I am and what I'm doing, and keep spitting peas at people. The beginning of the end is when I piss my pants and start calling my Dad Richard Nixon and making impeachment jokes. Everyone's a bit embarrassed by this and they all pretend not to look when I stuff my index finger in the turkey and call it Cecil.

The aftershocks slow down a bit and I return to almost normal, and when I realise what I've been doing, I feel like about 30 different types of anal infection, so I decide to just shut up and say nothing and try and get back into everyone's good books.

I just sit there and answer questions politely, and then, wham!, another flash just as I'm telling my brother about how nice his wife's pie is. I hoik it all over the tablecloth and start dribbling, so instantly he's pissed off and wants to hit me. My mother (who doesn't know about the note "I" signed) is on my side and makes my brother leave me alone; but when I wake up from dribble land I find that they've moved me to sit beside Uncle Rex, who's never been the same since he stuck a peice of live electrical flex in his ear as a kid. All he does now is fart lots and play with his genitalia, shouting "UNDIES, UNDIES" every 10 minutes or so.

So now I know where I stand.

Shit I hate Christmas!


New Years

I've got about 14 different invites to people's New Years Eve parties, you know the sort when someone asks you PERSONALLY to come, so you can't blame the mail and say that the envelope got there in Mid-May (after re-posting it yourself 27 times). And they make such a big deal out of it too, like if you don't show they'll commit ritual suicide and leave a note saying it was because of you...

So I'm going to have to go to all 14 parties, and make some pathetic excuse for leaving, after being forced to drink 2 drinks per party (one with the host and one with the host's wife - the only people AT the party) and I'm going to have to get some form of inter-party transport, because I'm guaranteed to be over the alcohol limit.

I settle on a mountain bike, because hopefully it'll take all the knocks it'll probably get on the way around the visits I'm going to make. There's 14 stops, each of say 1/2 an hour, plus an estimated travel time of about 4 hours, so the whole thing is going to take 11 hours. If I start at 12 in the afternoon, I'll be fine.

The Eve starts fine, I'm 4 parties down and I'm 1/2 an hour ahead of schedule because I told the first 2 couples I have beubonic plague at the 1/4 hour mark. I'm riding the mountain bike Ok, only I'm slowing down so I'll have to cut my stay time at the next few parties to make up for my anticipated speed at the 12th visit mark. I gain 1/2 an hour at party number 7 by puking on their door- step before I even got into the house after riding down a real windy lane to get to their house. They lock the door on me, so I'm off. At #10 I'm not too good. I get there and it's one of those places where you get invited because the host is that much more rich and successful than you and just likes to you be aware of it. The party is packed, but then I realise that it's packed with employees and employee's spouses of the host, so he's obviously been talking lay-offs like he does every time he has a big party. Someone spills their drink down his wife's front so he takes time off from attempting verticle sex with an unwilling secretary to take her into the bedroom and help her change.

I've just completed 20 double whiskey and drys and I'm well primed for my next move. I decide to liven this place up a bit. I organise one of those drink- till-you-puke contests that always seem to happen between consenting males of single figure IQ around this time of the year. Some poor accounts clerk pops his twinkies at about the 4 jug mark, all down the back of the hosts TV set. I switch it on so it'll dry out, and there's a massive bang and the lights go out too.

The Host stumbles out of his bedroom with half his wife's wet ensemble, asking what the hell happened. I tell him it's a wiring problem, his TV and his lights are on the same fuse and they shouldn't be. He doesn't want to listen, so I grab a lighter and start walking around the room in circles. Of course, everyone is watching this flame going round and round and round, and sure enough, a couple more contestants in the drinking competition start puking their irrespective rings out in the dark, some on the host. I slip out the back and jump on my pushbike because the smell is triggering off almost everyone in the room and it's like a puke minefield in there.

I got to #11, and they're not answering their door, so of course my conscience is screaming at me, and now I'm scared that I'll go round the back and find them hanging from the rafters in the kitchen with a note written in blood pointing the finger at me for being such a prick. So now I'm really feeling great, but I've got to keep going, because I remember that #12 has a big gas oven that will probably seat both of them, if you know what I mean. I ride over there and they've left a note saying they're going to #13's party. This is great, cos I can save a bit of time, so I ride over to #13, but they've left a note saying the party's moved to #14, and everyone but Howard Cosell is invited.

I get to 14, and the cops are there already, and bugger me if couple #11 are there after all my worrying. So my conscience is demanding blood money and reparation payments, the like of which haven't been seen since the end of the 1st World War. I go over, and really sweat it out of them, saying I'm so sorry for calling the newspapers and the police, but I thought there must have been some messy domestic incident and that Mr #11 must have told Mrs #11 about the secretary he's been shagging on and off, and she must have told him about the guy from the Ajax Brewery whos been doing 2 housecalls a week for the past 10 years even though Mr #11 has been through the Betty Ford Clinic.

So they start a fight, and the cops shoot them both because it's New Years and everyone's supposed to be having a good time......

Don't invite me - I'm not coming.