Tell Me about Christmas - Part 2
Hi, I’m gonna tell you our advent calendar. This has got all the days until Christmas Day on. And what happens is today’s the 14th of December, so we find the window with the 14th on. And then the lucky person whose turn it is, that’s me, can open the window, and then, ready, inside, there’s a picture of some kind of treat or toys. Now this is a picture of a toy soldier.
And when I was a child who had this, and in the family, each child would take it in turns different day to open the window. We would be very excited about it.
People often put mistletoe in their homes at Christmas. The tradition is to hang it in the doorway and then kiss somebody underneath it. Nobody’s really sure where it came from. Apparently, mistletoe was used a long time ago to ward off bad spirits and that’s why we use it at Christmas. The proper tradition, of course, is when you kiss someone, you take the berry and you crush it. I don’t know why.
Christmas crackers are something that most people have at Christmas but I think they… It’s a bit of a silly tradition really because nobody takes Christmas crackers very seriously. You usually have them maybe with your Christmas dinner, or maybe on Boxing Day, the day after Christmas. And you have them on the table, and then everybody turns to the person next to them or to somebody else at the table and you pull the cracker and it makes a big bang!
And then inside the cracker, you find usually three things I think. There’s a paper hat, and a joke, and usually a small toy, or… like… could be something like a necklace as well, or small piece of stationery, that kind of thing.
But the problem with Christmas crackers is that none of those things are ever any good. So the first thing you do is you get your paper hat out, which is usually such a bright colour and you put it on your head. And normally what happens is it doesn’t actually fit on your head. So while you’re putting in on your head, it tends to break so you got this kind of slightly broken, ripped, silly paper hat on your head. And then everybody reads out their joke. And it’s always a really really bad joke. And then there of course is the toy, the little gift. And yet usually that’s something that you never want, you never use, and again, it probably will break within about two days.
So I think what happens is people kind of think, “oh, we’re not gonna bother having Christmas crackers because they are rubbish anyway” but then you just feel like, “oh well, but it wouldn’t be Christmas without Christmas crackers”. So you buy the crackers anyway and you pull them and then you complain about how bad the jokes are and the fact that the hat doesn’t fit you properly. And that’s what normally happens.