Reasons why I hate Christmas more and more each year:
1) The days and hours in the month of December are exponentially shorter than any other month, yet somehow the days at work seem longer and the start of the month seems a year ago. This results in not having enough time to get anything done without being uber-organised, which I'm not.
2) No matter how early you plan to get everything done, you're still running around at the last minute trying to get everything done. (See reason #1 as to why.)
3) The entire thing is so commercialised that you spend hours trying to get someone the 'perfect' present and what starts off as a simple shopping trip ends up taking 5 hours.
4) All those annoying people who only go out drinking at Christmas fill the pubs up so you can't go anywhere for a quiet drink. Stay at home, you selfish bastards. :P
5) The Frankfurt market - don't even get me started. It's overpriced, there only technically need to be about 4 stalls because the majority of them sell the same things, and it's always placed in such a way as to cause a complete people gridlock no matter when you go there. Plus it's a tourist trap - bugger off, tourists. It's bad enough you flock here in the summer without making Christmas annoying as well. (It's all rather a shame, because otherwise I'd really like it...)
6) By the time I finish work, usually on Christmas Eve, I'm just too tired to enjoy it...
7) TV saves all the really good stuff until Christmas so you need three VCRs and 17 televisions to be able to watch everything you like. (That being said, about 90% of stuff I want to watch this year is on terrestrial, so at least I can tape it. We can't tape of cable at the moment - most annoying.)
8) Even though you could try and get everyone their Christmas presents in August or something, the likelihood is that by December the same things will be on sale, or the thing you want to get won't be available until nearer Christmas (especially the case with CDs and DVDs.)
9) What's even more annoying is David is impossible to buy for because whatever I might see to buy for him, he'll already have bought himself a month ago. If he's also managed to get what I've bought for my mum I'll be really annoyed.
10) Everything's so expensive and takes so much time, and Christmas shopping is a complete nightmare.
11) It's also impossible to find anyone a decent birthday card at Christmas, because apparently nobody is born in December. Or February 14, or Easter, for that matter...
12) You stock up and eat more food than you really should out of some misguided idea that the shops won't be open again until the next year, whe in reality they'll be open again on December 27.
13) You have to pretend to be enjoying yourself "because it's Christmas" when all you want to do is punch the next living thing that gets in your way. Although that's probably just me.
I'm sure there are a few more than that as well, but I'll be here all day if I don't stop. This is basically a wordier version of last year's similar post, which just read something along the lines of "Christmas can fuck right off" Quite.
As a perfect example, take this weekend.
On Friday we met up with some old Inline people outside the Council House to drink in the ambience of the German Market and meet up with some people we'd not seen in a while. We all stayed on the Council House side of the fence because the crowds were insane. I only ventured through the crowd once to show Paul where the applewine stall was, and I swear I was this close to either punching someone or screaming as loud as I could...
After a couple of hours we got cold and decided to try and find a pub where we could sit down and have a drink. First we tried Bennetts, but it was barely even standing room only in there, and a wander past both the Hill (which, no) and the Briar showed similar situations in there. I'd had enough by this point and wanted to go home, but instead we ended up trudging to the John Bright.
Even that was packed by its standards, but at least we managed to sit down.
We stayed there for a couple of drinks and then got a taxi home, stopping at the chippy for dinner.
On Saturday Paul had to finish his Christmas shopping (mine still isn't finished) and dragged me around Kings Heath to help him pick things out for my mum
and David. He's decided to get me the MP3 player I wanted, the Creative Zen Microphoto, and if I'd realised the hassle it would have caused I never would have mentioned it.
After Kings Heath we travelled to Selly Oak to investigate PC World, Comet and Currys to see if they had the player, since earlier investigations into Dixons discovered the company appears to have disappeared except in online circles (the Dixons in the Bullring is now a Currys, and the one that used to be in Martineau Square is now a dead shop unit). Comet had the player but only in pink, PC World had the new Vision M but nothing much else by Creative, and Currys had a grand total of about 7 different players from various companies, and approximately 70 different versions of the iPod.
I fucking hate iPods. I think they're ugly fashion accessories and an invitation to get mugged because of the white earphone leads. Anyway, needless to say, I wasn't very impressed by Currys, although the man in the shop did suggest various places we could try to get one (including Comet, the rival shop...)
By the time we'd got to Comet, however, I was so annoyed by the queuing in Kings Heath that I'd turned into a moody cow and didn't WANT the pink Zen, because I WANT THE BLACK ONE, DAMMIT.
As a last ditch attempt we went to Argos because I'd seen it in there - and, of course, surprise surprise, they were out of stock.
At which point I decided I didn't want the thing any more and had a bit of a strop about it, until Paul finally moaned at me to order it online from Argos and be done with it. So I'm going to do that later.
In short, I should've bought the damn thing back in April or whenever it was I first saw it, rather than wait for someone to buy it for me for Christmas.
Although having read some of the customer reviews on Amazon I wonder if the bloody thing will even work when I get it. It got 90% five stars with most people moaning about the interface or the software or various other things, but most of them seem like people who moan for the sake of moaning...
Sunday morning didn't get much better, either. I was due at Symphony Hall for rehearsal at 10.00 and was meant to arrive at 9.30. I overslept by 15 minutes and only just managed to leave on time at 8.30, and was then waiting 20 MINUTES for a 50 (!!) which then proceeded to drive as slowly as possible and get caught at every set of traffic lights. I think I got there just about on time, then got completely lost in the maze of corridors trying to find the band room where we were getting changed.
The break for lunch wasn't that much better, either, since the German Market was completely stuffed to the gills with annoying people and parents with pushchairs and small children. At one point, when everything came to a standstill, the urge to cause bodily harm was starting to rise...
And then I tried to cook Sunday dinner whilst Paul was out drinking (and lately he seems to have become a complete lightweight, getting drunk to the point of falling over on four pints or less) and it ended up being 50 minutes later than I'd planned because I kept dropping everything. I even dropped the tray of half-cooked potatoes and stuffing balls midway through cooking, covering the floor with oil in the process. And my broccoli mash went wrong, even though everything else was fine.
I have another week of work and then two weeks off (except Tuesday 2 January, when I have to be in), and I can already tell it's going to drag its arse to Friday on purpose just to be annoying. I haven't finished my Christmas shopping, and I'm meant to fit in far too much into too few days:
~ inviting grandmother and uncle over for dinner before Christmas, possible on Wednesday;
~ wrapping presents and writing / makings cards (yeah, fuck that) and getting things sent to various people before Christmas (not going to happen);
~ party for friends on Friday;
~ party for family on Sunday (Christmas Eve);
~ food shopping at some point so I can actually make Christmas dinner;
~ make Christmas cake.
AND THERE IS NO TIME. It's so frustrating I could cry, but that wouldn't be very productive.
There was going to be another rant (longer than this) about fandom, how I miss being a part of it but not how bloody annoying it can be, and how I definitely don't miss the arguments and being so emotionally attached to fictional characters. Fandom is really a very silly thing, and I can say that in retrospect now I don't have any time for it any more - not in a negative, "pooh-pooh" way, but literally, physically. I don't have time for anything any more except work, travel and vegetating, and fandom takes up so much energy and time and emotion. It IS silly to expend so much energy into something so ultimately pointless. Whenever I try to get back into I remember why, all those years ago, I stopped posting on message baords - it's just not worth the hassle.
There should also be another longer rant about writing, again, but I'm sure it starts to bore you all after a while. At this point I don't care because I'm feeling selfish and moody, so deal with it. It's short because I have work to do, amongst all the other things I have to do. I'm annoyed with myself because I keep on clinging to that dream of writing, despite making the realisation a few months ago that it won't happen. I'm annoyed with myself for continually reading books and thinking "I am a much better writer than this person" - because who am I to make that assumption? I am embittered and angry and full of ideas, too busy and tired and apathetic to start, and too damn cowardly to take that extra step because I fear rejection. I'm not strong enough to be a writer and my words don't mean a thing any more. Especially when all they're good for is things like this, and nobody gives a shit what I'm saying anyway.
I'm sure everyone will permit me to die quietly on Christmas Day, and I apologise in advance to anyone who bothers to come on Friday if I'm a moody cow.