Wishing you a Happy Christmas from a grumpy journo
On the first day of Christmas, Â I had a massive headache.
Of course you have to remember Christmas in newspaper-land started in about February as forward planning began and the press releases started coming in.
These were largely spiked to use newspaper parlance so to translate, we deleted them.
In fact we deleted them until about October when we maybe read the subject line, saw the word ‘festive and then spiked them as well.
There’s nothing like an overdose of ‘jingle tills’, ‘Santa paws’ and other cliches to make a grumpy journalist with a deadline the next day grumpier than a trumped up email purporting to be news, with added holly and a Santa emoji.
Yes, safe to say , Christmas spirit tends to avoid the actual newsroom until the week before the actual event, when we basically give in and write ‘Christmas angels’ ‘Christmas spirit’ and ‘festive party’ about 700 times each , safe in the knowledge that it will be over soon.
Scrooge would be proud of our token effort.
We even, albeit reluctantly in an unadorned newsroom, take part in Christmas Jumper Day.
It’s for charity and when else does an entire, otherwise serious and hard-working (most of the time) office turn up wearing bright acrylic clothing adorned with Robins, Santa and amusing straplines involving bells.
Which doesn’t go down well if you happen to be reporting from court.
It’s the sort of irony that a journalist can embrace, while standing firmly on the issue of non-participation in jollity that is enforced for the rest of the year.
I want to say we are, as a species , too busy, but the reality is we are just too grumpy.
Possibly, we know, as much as anyone that Christmas is not the happiest time of the year for everyone and not everybody feels festive at the sight of a string of tinsel.
Let’s be honest, Christmas is a time of great pressure around money, family and relationships.
It tends to be a time of darker news for some.
But hopefully not most.
So Happy Christmas to you and yours from all us grumpy journos.