Today’s Star columnist: Ron Clayton

Ron Clayton
Ron Clayton
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Its here - belatedly.

’Crimbal’ once written cringingly on a card (averse to prozac? look away), Killjoy -not Kilroy- was here. Fargate -The Snowmanplayed on guitar- Andean pipes - Simon and Garfunkel and Condors (not cigars large vultures fond of carrion) my spirits soared - time for mulled wine.

Then like Icarus my spirits fell to earth, neither brass band nor NW Sheffield carolling- plastered all over the Telegraph- will raise them.

Christmas Shops - mass queues to guzzle Carling- overtime at A and E- panic shopping for freezer bread -shops closed for a day- bobbies and paramedics being stressed- busy time for Samaritans - sweaters with gormless looking reindeer on them soon as passe as musical ties, clip on reindeer antlers- Santa Hoods.

Sham of sending cards to people you rarely see. Silly string in the Nelson. Past office do’s - reaction to frustrations of Civil Service life- now a permanent hangover- no decorations on pc’s - Christmas Day in the Workhouse indeed.

Bumper edition of East Enders. Pass the Hemlock Socrates (what a player).

Oh Ode To Joy- I’ll put on my (Chinese)boots Festive Netto tabard -dance to Mike Oldfield’s ‘Portsmouth’ in Dixon Lane where municipal illumination has lingered since last year like the little boy Santa Claus forgot.

The shine has gone off Christmas like off the old fashioned cards - selection boxes in pillow slip, holly behind mirrors- paper streamers, balloons, Chinese lanterns, tinsel-fairy lights, real trees, pints with Pater in the Shoulder-parents who gave their kids too much more than an apple-orange and a new penny-spice loaf -tart.

Warding off sprouts and sage and onion during the Queens Speech. Fat Ern and mistletoe-sexual harassment, these days - Christmas Day with Cromwell?

Those of you with ‘ families’ - those of the cloth, humanists, those feeding the homeless and the truly lost and lonely, trying to make it something other than gloss and gluttony- Happy Christmas.

No copies of Its a Wonderful Life or invitations please. I am at the Hillsborough Hotelthe landlady assures me I will not have to pull my cracker by myself

Yours in the bleak mid winter...