Yet More Random Stuff, Pre-Christmas Edition

Sign seen at a local church, of which there are approximately eleventy-thousand just in the City alone:

“Would you like to sing in a voluntary choir?”

See, this is why we will have to eventually leave England, much as we are liking it at the moment, because, apparently you can be caught up in a choir press gang, and chained together to sing choral music, involuntarily. This is a harsh and brutal land, where people can be swept up off the street, forced to raise their voices high for Handel’s Messiah, probably because it’s all Christmas and all. Still, there’s no indication that after the holidays are over you can return to your family, hoarser but wiser. So it’s probably safer if we escape back to America where our ancestors first threw off the chains of choral tyranny.

Mary pointed out the other day that unlike the US, here the invasive, all pervasive Christmas music is all pretty much completely secular. We haven’t heard a single “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing”, “O Little Town Of Bethlehem”, or even, and here I do thank whatever deity is my current favorite, no “Little Drummer Boy”. You do hear lots of “White Christmas”, and other Irving Berlin hits, though. It’s not that I dislike the religious themed songs, it’s just that it’s a nice change of pace not to listen to them till my ears bleed. I think the lack of religious Christmas tunes are a direct effect of the British forsaking their traditional gods, probably because a culture that has the sausage roll and the bacon butty has no need of a Supreme Being.

Why in god’s name don’t we have little individual serving mincemeat pies in the States? These things are wonderful. It’s like a mini-Christmas party in your mouth every time you eat one. The little individual Christmas puddings are more of an acquired taste. I’m working on acquiring the taste as I write this, and the ones impregnated with extra alcohol go a long way to bumping them to the head of my Christmas Naughty But Oh, So Nice List.

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