“What did you do today?” “Oh you know, nothing much. Decent day at work, popped to town, picked up some things, went to my friend’s house and assaulted him with Christmas decorations like some kind of demented Wise Man from days of yore”

I really enjoy Christmas. It has great and terrible music, performed in great and terrible ways. It has mince pies and Christmas cake and Christmas pudding. It has Baileys (typically, lots of it). Christmas is a lovely time of year.

The best bit of Christmas though, and I know how cringey this sounds, is the giving. But not all of it.

Today I had a thought, about trying to brighten up a friend’s life (which was already perfectly bright, so really I was just creating work for myself but WHATEVER) and I did something I don’t normally do, which is rather than overthinking it, I just did the thing. The result of which, as I’ve already mentioned, was me turning up at his house like a psychopathic Santa Claus with an insane Christmas obsession. Mercifully he’s used to me being a little bit mental, and it’s all fine.

It was nice, because it was the right kind of giving. The giving where you do it just for the sake of doing a thing for another person, not because you’re expected to, or because you’ve always done it, or because there’s a myth about a fat bloke in a red suit. Just giving for the sake of (hopefully) creating a bit of happiness.

Of course the complexity of Christmas is that there are always a few people you are obliged to get gifts for, fully in the knowledge that you’ll not really enrich their lives by doing so, and you’ll only burn a hole in your own pocket. Which is why I hate Christmas.

So to conclude, I love Christmas, but I hate it.

You’re welcome.

(Other key messages from today’s broadcast include: if you want to do something, you should do it, because overthinking can be damaging and it’s good to believe in your ideas. Even if you are a bit nuts. Because your friends are good, and will probably mostly overlook how nuts you are, and might even offer you tea.)

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