Sunday, December 24, 2017

Advent Thought 22 and Number 24

As soon as the world of retail notices people enjoying something it takes it off them, polishes it, and sells it back to them. Tony Parsons said words along these lines in his excellent book Dispatches from the Front Line of Popular Culture. Since the book is now 20 years old it would be interesting to re-read it and see how it has aged. May do that.

Taking the long view of Advent I notice that Christmas jumpers, which were never a thing, have been thus polished.

And Advent calendars are much fancier things than the ones of my youth. In the early 1960s they were a piece of landscape foolscap paper with 24 cardboard panels or windows. You opened one each day and tried to work out how the image was related to Christmas. My sister and I were required to remember whose turn it was. I'm sure we both feel the other one cheated.

Whilst the pictures were somewhat semi-detached to the festival we both knew that a nativity scene was coming along on day 24 - the biggest window of them all. The calendar, of course, started on December 1st so there were 24 windows. Then the world of retail can keep its left over stock until next year.

This is my final Advent thought. It is Sunday, the fourth of Advent and also Christmas Eve. The 12 days of Christmas start tomorrow.

Everybody's waitin' for me to arrive
Sendin' out the message to all of my friends

I hope you have managed to wait, hope, rest and pray during this Advent season. And I hope you have managed to hold on to one or two precious thoughts that nobody can make better with polish and packaging.

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