Sunday, December 29, 2013

Santas Little Redhead

A special double Christmas edition of the monthly book cover, Book One and Two of The Santa Claus Chronicles by Robert Devereaux.  Santa Steps Out and Santa Claus Conquers The Homophobes.

On the cover of Santa Steps Out, Santa is "stepping out" with a fiery redheaded woman in the embers of her fireplace. It is a well documented fact that Santa (much like Satan) is quite fire resistant. The same can not be said for the smouldering redhead who is already showing signs of burning and may well burst into flames at any moment.

The cover of Santa Claus Conquers The Homophobes depicts yet another naked redheaded woman who has the power of financial defecation.  Not necessarily the greatest power to possess, but probably not the worst, especially in difficult economic times.  Red relieves herself on the belly of a pregnant woman as Santa watches proudly. This may be the same redheaded woman he "stepped out with" in the previous book and imbibed her with his magical spirit of charity and giving. Which would go a long way towards explaining why she can poo gold coins.  Hopefully they are gold coins and not those foil wrapped chocolate ones popular at Christmas time, especially considering their place of manufacture.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Santa Slay

Santa kicks arse!

Santa Claws is Coming to Town by Alice Cooper with scenes form the movie Santa Slay.  If you feel the need to know more about Santa and his gang of evil helpers you can read a previous years blog post on the subject here.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Sogland Evidence

Take it to the crime-lab, I suspect The Captain left his DNA all over everything.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Christmas Card Etiquette

Oddly Christmas cards originated long before they could be printed and, even more oddly, before the tradition of Christmas. In pre-Christian Europe it was common to send good luck gifts for new years.  In Rome at the time, theses gifts were often accompanied with written cards. The cards were often sent on December 25th to ensure they arrived by January 1st.  When Christianity took over in Rome the tradition continued, though these cards still did not make mention of Christmas. The card tradition eventually migrated through Europe and to England, where these home made cards combined well wishes for both Christmas and the New Year and were delivered before Christmas Day.

Later in the fourteenth century with the advent of wood-block printing, small scale mass production of New Year's cards appeared in Germany. By the fifteenth century, religious Germans were creating New Year gifts called 'Andachtsbilder'. These cards still focused on the new year but were often decorated with a picture of the baby Jesus.  The lithograph was invented at the end of the 1700s and further promoted the printing of Christmas themed holiday greeting cards across Europe, but the final leap of the Christmas card was tied to the scocial etiquette of the early 1800s.
During the 1800's the practice of visiting one’s friends and relatives was a middle and upper class social convention with it's own etiquette revolving around the calling card.  Every well to do gentleman kept a ready supply of calling cards with him to distribute upon his visits.  A married man had a medium sized card, while an unmarried man had a smaller card. Men’s cards were always smaller than women’s.
On a first visit to a household a servant was often sent to deliver a calling card as it was not expected to be invited in.  A gentleman would give one card to each lady of the house.  If the lady of the house was not home, but her daughter was, the gentleman sent in his card and departed as a young lady did not receive calls from a gentleman unless they were very intimate friends.
When calling upon a friend, a gentleman gave his card to the servant answering the door. The servant would be holding a silver tray and the card would be placed upon it. If the person the gentleman was calling upon was home, the servant would take the card to them and they would come meet the gentleman. If the person being called upon was not home, the servant would leave the card for when they returned.
If a card was left with a folded top right corner it indicated that the card had been left in person rather than by a servant, and often other corners were folded down to signify the nature of the visit. For a congratulatory visit, the left hand upper corner was turned down, the left hand lower corner for a condolence visit, the right hand lower corner if you were visiting before a long trip. Alternatively a gentleman would inscribe initials upon the card, which stood for French words, to denote the reason for his visit.
Congratulations: p. f. (pour féliciter)
Expressing thanks: p. r. (pour remercier)
Condolences: p. c. (pour condoléance)
Happy New Year: p. f. N. A. (pour feliciter Nouvel An)
Taking leave: p. p. c. (pour prendre congé)
Introducing ones self: p. p. (pour présenter)
Visiting cards became an indispensable social tool, with rules governing their use, much more elaborate and sophisticated than clicking like on facebook. During Christmas and New Year it was common for the person you were calling on to be out visiting also so it became a seasonal exchange of cards.
The growing use of decorated printed stationary and the gradual development of New Year specific calling cards prompted Sir Henry Cole and his  friend Calcott Horsley to create the first official "Christmas" Christmas card for the masses in 1843 to take advantage of the new Public Post Office.  Selling for 1 shilling, the card had three panels. The outer two panels showed people caring for the poor and in the centre panel was a family having a large Christmas dinner in which a child was being given a glass of wine. 

As printing methods improved, Christmas cards became more decorative and more popular and were produced in large numbers from about 1860.  In 1915, John C. Hall and two of his brothers created Hallmark Cards, still one of the biggest card makers today. In the 1920s a trend back towards home made cards became popular, often made with foil and ribbon on them. Today, cards have all sorts of pictures on them: nativity scenes, Christmas trees, rude reindeer, naked Santa Claus etc. With the advent of cheaper photo-printing a disturbing trend in custom cards has arisen in the form of individuals and families taking Christmas themed photographs of themselves (or their pets) and producing them on mass as cards.

These days, Christmas cards make up approximately 45% of all greeting cards sent and, despite historically being a gentleman's social tool, only around 15% of those Christmas cards are purchased by men.

Saturday, December 07, 2013

Dalek Christmas Song

Christmas season already.
More Daleks.

I'm Gonna Spend My Christmas With a Dalek by The Go Go's.

The Go-Go's were a semi-professional group from Newcastle and released I'm Gonna Spend My Christmas With a Dalek in 1964 at the height of the original Dalek-mania (not unlike Beatle-mania but without the haircuts). The vocals were by lead singer Sue Smith with one of the male members of the group providing a dodgy, nasal Dalek voice.


I bring you gree-tings from all Da-leks (Dalek voice)
I'm gonna spend my Christmas with a Dalek,
And hug him under the mistletoe
And if he's very nice
I'll feed him sugar spice
And hang Christmas stocking from his big lead toe
And when we both get up on Christmas morning
I'll kiss him on his chromium-plated head
And take him in to say hi to Mum
And frighten daddy out of his bed!

Merry Christmas
Mer-ry Christ-mas (Dalek voice)
Happy Christmas
Hap-py Christ-mas (Dalek voice)
Merry Christmas
Mer-ry Christ-mas (Dalek voice)
To you

I wish to be your friend (Dalek voice)
Please may I have some more plum pud-ding and cus-tard? (Dalek voice)
I'm gonna spend my Christmas with a Dalek,
And if I make him happy he will stay
He'll go (whoop) and (whirr) and twiddle his eye
And then my little Dalek will say

Merry Christmas
Christ-mas Tree (Dalek voice)
Happy Christmas
Mist-le-toe (Dalek voice)
Merry Christmas
Mer-ry Christ-mas (Dalek voice)
To you

Merry Christmas
I love you (Dalek voice)
Happy Christmas
You love me (Dalek voice)
Merry Christmas
Mer-ry Christ-mas (Dalek voice)
To you

Merry Christmas
More-plum-pudding (Dalek voice)
Happy Christmas
More-cus-tard... (Dalek voice)
(fade out)