Father Christmas? For a moment there he almost had me. He’s so totally believable, of course you have to want to believe and what small child doesn’t want to believe in a friendly old man who brings you presents? Ho, ho, ho and all that. I think the clue is in the name though: ‘Father’ Christmas. Even so, it still took me quite a while, years and years, to work it all out.
I don’t know when I completely stopped believing that the man who left my Christmas presents wasn’t a fat, jolly, white-bearded man in a reindeer sleigh, but was instead a bad tempered control freak who would really rather not have bothered. Of course the clues were there again for me to see – a reel-to-reel tape recorder when my three or four year old self would have rather liked a toy Teddy. Surely Father Christmas knew I desperately wanted a yellow Teddy Bear with a black button nose?
Most children have a favourite toy; something that they grow up with and cherish for ever. Often it’s something brought to them one magical Christmas Eve by that most magical of beings in his bright red suit, a teddy or a stuffed giraffe, a knitted kitten, maybe even a tiger, a special something never to be forgotten. I don’t remember having a toy like that; I hardly remember any of my childhood toys at all. Perhaps it’s me, but I don’t think it is. For a moment though, he almost had me.
Father Christmas? You know, I think that mine didn’t do his job properly, not properly at all. Ho, ho, fucking ho.