Sharing My Holiday World 25-12-2018

December 25, 2018 15 comments

Here is my post for Melanie’s Share Your Holiday World. I always post these on a Sunday, but this one is quite topical so I thought I’d better get on with it! There’s even a special banner with a Father Christmas in his sleigh on it 🙂

I will answer the questions and then Google them and post the correct answer underneath.

What Christmas beverage is also known as “milk punch?”
That sounds like eggnog! Some people will go to great lengths for eggnog, as I wrote in my little story Eggnog Overkill.

And Google says… eggnog! Yay! 🙂

Before becoming tied up with Christmas what was Yule?
Yule was traditionally a log. Then the early Christian church decided to go on a mass recruitment drive and hijacked the pagan festival of Saturnalia for the purpose. As that slowly became a Christian celebration, so the Yule log was in its turn hijacked by early Christian chefs and became the tasty chocolate cake we all know and love today.

And Google says… a Northern European pagan festival at midwinter. I wasn’t even close 😦

Stollen is the traditional fruit cake of which country?
I’m pretty sure I have one, I’ll check the box, one sec… hey, where’s it gone? It’s been stollen!

Ha ha ha. Ha ha. Ha.

Okay then, it sounds German.

And Google says… “a traditional German bread eaten during the Christmas season”. Woohoo! 🙂

In what century was the first written use of Xmas?
It sounds very modern but Melanie posted an image which looks kinda old and traditional, so I’m going to take a stab at the 17th.

And Google says… the mid-1500s. So that’s the 16th century. So close! 😦

The modern Santa Claus is mainly a mix of what two figures?
We’ll have to try to work this out. “Santa”, presumably, is a misspelling of “Satan”. That ties in with Christmas’s pagan roots. “Claus” sounds a lot like “claws”, so something with claws… Freddy Krueger!

There you go. Satan Krueger. Freddy Morningstar. Take your pick.

And Google says… hmm, not an easy one to work out, this one! It appears to be a cross between St Nicholas and a salesman. And he’s been featured in Coca Cola ads since the 1920s! (Yes, I got this info from the Coca Cola website.) I wasn’t even close on this one 😦

 

Two out of five. Well, I was close with “Xmas” so I’m awarding myself half a point for that.

Merry Christmas everybody!

 

Sharing My Christmassy World 23-12-2018

December 23, 2018 32 comments

Here is my post for Melanie’s Share Your World.

What traditional Christmas decoration is actually a parasitic plant?
Tinsel. It eats away at your very soul even as it beautifies your tree.

No, that doesn’t sound right. Mistletoe, then.

Name something about this holiday season (whatever version you may celebrate) that most people like, but you dislike?
Mince pies. They’re full of mincemeat. I like mince. I like meat. Mincemeat is neither of those things. Mince pies promise both but don’t deliver. Damn you, stupid lying Christmas snacks.

What’s your favourite – or least favourite – song sung traditionally at this time of year?
On the radio and in supermarkets you can’t escape Jona Lewie’s “Stop the Cavalry”, from December 1980. It’s not Christmas until Jona Lewie fires up. It’s a real traditional Christmas song, all about being stuck in the trenches during the war and not being able to get home for Christmas.

Actually – it’s not really a Christmas song at all, is it. Hey hum.

In the song “Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer,” what “incriminating” evidence was found on Grandma’s back?
I’m vaguely aware of the song, I think it’s an American favourite. Given the title, I’m going to go with reindeer hoof prints.

Finally: What would you like to share with the world, if time or cost were no object?
I would like to share my plan for the end of violence. Everyone would get a games console and would shoot each other online instead. And if people got bored and decided to try some real-world violence, they would find that months of sitting on the couch eating snacks and playing games had eroded their health to the point that they were no longer capable of hurting anybody.

I have written to the UN but have sadly received no response.

 

Merry Christmas, everybody 🙂

 

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FF – A Newer Life

December 19, 2018 67 comments

Here is my story for Friday Fictioneers, hosted by Rochelle. This week’s photo was contributed by Adam Ickes.

This photo is a re-run from December 2013. I have used the same basic story idea I wrote back then but have completely rewritten it.

adamickes-childsboots

Copyright Adam Ickes

 

They’d broken away from their tribes, leaving the modern world behind to live as their ancestors had. Hunting, fishing, camp fires. No electricity. No computers.

But the modern world has demands and those demands usually involve money. Some things cannot be hunted or fished. A small income was required.

From time to time backpackers wandered into their valley. In the traditional way, every part of the poor unfortunate was used.

Waste not, want not.

The slogan for their best-selling line ran…

“Hard-wearing hiking boots. Made by men, for men!”

And of course, their biggest secret, from men.

 

Sharing My Merry World 16-12-2018

December 16, 2018 11 comments

Here is my post for Melanie’s Share Your (Merry) World.

What’s the worst topping you could put on popcorn?
Pretty much anything, as popcorn is the food of the devil.

To be fair to popcorn, as a little kiddie I ate far too much at a circus or fairground and was violently ill. Now, even the thought of popcorn makes me feel queasy.

In what country did Silent Night originate?
I want to say Germany. But that’s probably just because I’m so familiar with the German version (Stille Nacht). I shall now ask the font of all knowledge.

I was close! A German-speaking country – Austria.

How would you react if there was irrefutable proof that God doesn’t exist? How about if there was irrefutable proof that God does exist?
Ooh, I don’t like either of those scenarios. It would change the world in horrible ways. And according to Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, if the existence of God were proven, God would logically cease to exist!

People need something to believe and have faith in and many people choose God. If God’s existence were either proven or disproven (and everyone believed the proof), that’s the end of belief and faith in his existence.

That would set the cat among the pigeons and no mistake.

What is the scariest non-banned item you could take on to a plane?
I’m not entirely sure what’s banned these days, but the scariest item I’ve seen someone else take on a plane was one of those sticks to hold your hair up. It looked very sharp. How is that not considered a lethal weapon?

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FF – Eggnog Overkill

December 12, 2018 64 comments

Here is my story for Friday Fictioneers, hosted by Rochelle. This week’s photo was contributed by Douglas M. MacIlroy.

 

Cleevus finished the code and hit enter. The globe rose into the air, spinning, spewing blinding extra-dimensional energy. Lamps flickered. Outside, the sound of car alarms, people screaming, explosions.

“Yes, my beauty!” laughed Cleevus maniacally as the globe’s light reached a crescendo. Plaster fell from the ceiling and the globe dimmed and settled on the podium. It opened.

“Oh yes, YES!” he cackled.

He reached in, took out a glass and sipped.

“Ahhhhh. Eggnog, interdimensionally-mixed to perfection!”

His upstairs neighbour fell through the ceiling, landing in a crumpled heap. The house next door collapsed.

“Collateral damage… eh, who cares! Mmm, eggnog.”

 

Sharing My World 09-12-2018

December 9, 2018 27 comments

Here is my post for Melanie’s Share Your World.

What are the most important lesson(s) you’ve learned in life?
I’ve learned tons of really profound things. Don’t run with scissors. Don’t leave a heater balanced precariously on the edge of the bath regardless of how cold the bathroom is. Important stuff.

How did you meet your husband/wife or significant other? How did you know he/she was “the one”?
Ah, yes. My significant other. I wasn’t sure but everyone at work told me to go for it. So I did! How did I know my significant other was “the one”? When I saw those graphics. Magic! Me and my PlayStation 4 are very happy together, thanks for asking.

If you could take a year-long paid sabbatical, what would you do?
I’d get bored, I would imagine. And I’d feel guilty the whole time because getting paid for doing nothing doesn’t feel right.

What is your favourite thing to buy at a movie theatre concession stand?
One sec while I run that through the translator… ah, yes, the little shop in the cinema that sells coffee and popcorn.

Nothing. I buy nothing from the little shop in the cinema that sells coffee and popcorn.

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FF – All in a Day’s Work

December 5, 2018 75 comments

Here is my story for Friday Fictioneers, hosted by Rochelle. This week’s photo was contributed by Dawn M. Miller.

Copyright Dawn M. Miller

 

009 grimaced as he flew out the train window. Twisting his body to avoid the girders, he shot past the decomposing corpse of 004. Popular spot for chucking spies off trains…

Hitting the water, he struggled to the bank where a local wrapped him in a blanket, pointing to his shack.

“Welcome, Unfortunate Spies!” was written in seventeen different languages.

Very popular spot…

The local offered him the “Spy Pack” – fake passport, gadget watch, Walther PPK. 009 upgraded to “Deluxe”, which included bullets. Gonna need those…

Shooting the enterprising local (loose end) he headed off. All in a day’s work.