What next, now Christmas is over?

Ah, Boxing Day!  When much of the country’s workforce will snooze through Christmas TV ‘specials’ that usually turn out to be nothing special and films that haven’t been on for at least six weeks . . .

Christmas Day has been unwrapped, played with and put back in its shiny box for another year. Don’t be sad, because on the bright side it’ll be months until you walk into a supermarket and again hear Noddy Holder screaming, “It’s Christmaaassss!”

Noddy co-wrote “Merry Christmas Everybody!” with fellow Slade member Jim Lea in 1973 and apparently, each year, it earns them around £500,000 each.

They can afford to hire people to do their Christmas shopping and so avoid hearing their song playing in every department store from September onwards.

Another plus for saying “Tarra!” to December 25this there won’t be any more – until next year – of those misleading adverts for “Magical Christmas Wonderlands” that often disappoint children and anger their parents when they discover how tawdry the ‘attraction’ really is  . . . after they’ve paid their money and gone in through the gates.

I’m not referring to the big scale, professionally run “Winter Wonderlands” in places like Swansea and Cardiff. I mean the ones that offer ‘An enchanting Christmas experience at a stunning location’ that turns out to be in field 30 miles from the nearest beaten track.

Just a few weeks ago, at one of these ‘attractions’, the advertised ‘Stunning location’ was, according to one irate parent ‘A sea of mud’; their ‘Magical woodland walk’ was a dangerously steep, hard-core path; and ‘Santa’s Amazing Grotto’ was a cold dark room in which the only decoration was a Christmas tree.

And . . . when Santa appeared his beard kept falling off in front of the children!

It would take a heart of stone not to laugh – if it weren’t for the fact so many people fall for these ads. I’m sure you won’t. I’m off to write next year’s Christmas Number One.

Anyone know Mister Holder’s phone number?

Pet mad?

I think I’m turning into a bit of a softie.  Now, some people may find this a bit strange, but, here goes . . .

Our Cocker Spaniel’s name was actually written on my Christmas present list.
I know, I’m not alone, as millions of people include their pets in the Christmas festivities.  Pets have now been elevated to family member status.  Now when did this all happen?

To be honest with you, I’m convinced that the reason for this is that they are more appreciative, less argumentative, more loyal, less moody, love unconditionally and don’t pout for weeks on end like their human counterparts.

If I accidentally locked my partner and my Spaniel in the boot of the car, there would only be one who would genuinely pleased to see me when I opened it.

Pet lovers are all around us and the sale of pet toys and goodies have rocketed in the past five years. Pet clothes? Diamante collars?  I’m not too sure, but yes, people are buying these, too.

My spaniel, however, prefers a onesie.  Who’d have thought?

Phil Evans & Friends – Welsh & Scottish Night Special

Come and celebrate with us on this special day in the Welsh and Scottish calender.

We have: Gary Slaymaker:  a sharp and amazingly creative talent.  Karen Sherrard:  an audience pleaser and an asset to any variety show.  Rob Hughes: perfect comedy timing and a delight to watch.  Steffan Evans: one of the young guns of comedy and already a true comedy talent.  Aled Richards: a blessed storyteller with perfectly placed gags.  Stefan Pejic: talent and timing that engages the audience from the off.

Seven comedians under one roof, that will make you cry with laughter and get 2019 off to a great start.  There is no better way to kick off the new year.

To add to the occasion, food will be available from 7.00 pm. Show starts at 8.00 pm.

Just paws for thought!


As we’re approaching December 25th, I thought I’d ‘talk turkey’.

But I ‘chickened out’ . . .  in case it incurred the wrath of ‘The People For The Ethical Treatment Of Animals’ – better known as PETA.

Recently these ‘Vegan-gelists’ pressed the inhabitants of the Dorset village of Wool to change the name of the place to ‘Vegan Wool’ to‘Promote kindness to sheep’!

Had PETA done some research before making themselves look silly, they’d have discovered ‘Wool’ is an ‘Olde English’ variation of ‘Well’ and has nothing to do with sheep.

Unable to keep their paws (can I say that?) off our language, PETA now want to remove many long-established everyday phrases and sayings which, they say, ‘Perpetuate violence against animals’.


Generations of people have said “There’s more than one way to skin a cat” and “You’re flogging a dead horse”, without causing stress to any hyper-sensitive members of the animal kingdom who happen to be within earshot.

I loathe cruelty to animals. I’ve been all over the world (and Prestatyn!) and I’ve never once encountered anyone removing a feline’s fur coat or taking a rolled-up copy of Horse and Hound to a deceased Dobbin.

Soon, PETA will start accusing anyone who says “I’ve let the cat out of the bag” of a hate crime . . . even though putting a catintoa bag is much more cruel. Especially if you’re taking a Tom Cat to the vets to be snipped.

“Helpfully”, PETA have come up with alternative phrases, which they’d prefer us to use.  But those of us with common sense must refuse to use their daft new sayings.

They include “You can’t feed a fed horse” (!) and “There’s more than one way to peel a potato”.

Where will their infuriating interfering end?

Laurel and Hardy brought joy and laughter into the world, while PETA seems determined to extinguish it.

If they ever try to ban Stan and Ollie’s classic comedy “Way Out West” (which contains the line “You can take a horse to water . . . but a pencil must be lead”) that’ll definitely put the cat amongst the pigeons! Oops!

Christmas shopping trips – in the real world


Why don’t Christmas shoppers really look like they do in the adverts on TV?

Smiling families, matching jumpers and scarves, calmly strolling around the shops, snow gently falling around the town (they never seem to carry ANY bags though, have you noticed?)

Now, here is the reality . . .

The city centre is packed, people all walking in different directions (always the opposite way to me). There are men being dragged around shops they obviously don’t want to be in. Children are screaming . . . all surrounded by the same jolly Christmas music in every shop.

Then we have department stores doubling up as saunas.

It’s freezing outside so you have to wrap up, but as soon as you walk into a shop it hits you like one of the other half’s midlife flushes!

Oh yes – you can relate to this, can’t you?

It’s the children I feel most sorry for, strapped firmly into their pushchairs with only a Jenkins pastie for company (other pastie providers are available!), so many shopping bags hanging on the back of the pushchair, both child and pastie are in danger of tipping backwards and being catapulted across Debenhams.

Happy shopping, my friends!

Things do annoy me – and that’s the long and the short of it!

A regular reader came up to me last week and asked, “Do you really get annoyed about so many things . . . or do you just pretend?”

My response? “Kindly pass me that towel and get out of my bathroom!” I had new door locks fitted the next day.

The truth is I do get annoyed by many things.  Like . . . Christmas songs being played in shops well before Remembrance Sunday.  Christmas songs being played in shops well after Remembrance Sunday.

Recently I heard a BBC Radio Wales traffic presenter announce, “There is some issues on the Heads Of The Valleys Road!”  My quick fire response was worthy of Oscar Wilde – “Yeah, and that’s not the only thing there is issues with!”

You think Craig Revel Horwood is catty?  He’s an amateurcompared to me!

I must be one of those over-sensitive people whose hackles are easily raised.

As a matter of fact, my family’s raised hackles since the 18th Century, always releasing them into the wild when they’re old enough to fend for themselves.

Now that we’re well into winter, my perennial pet peeve is starting to appear once again – grown men wearing shorts in bitterly cold weather, striding around as if they’re in the Australian outback.  They might think they’re tough as leather, but in fact they’re daft as a brush.  Why?

Because, as their bare, pasty legs are attacked by icy winds, hail and snow, they wear woolly hats to keep their heads warm!  Does that make any sense whatsoever?

I overheard one young man justify his lack of long legwear in December by boasting, “I’ve come straight from football training!”  If he hadn’t been twice my size, I would have asked, “Fine. But why did you leave your trousers in the changing room?”

As for bandy, beer-bellied men over 50 wearing crumpled shorts at any time of year, I’m meeting the Lord Chief Justice soon to discuss having it made a capital offence . . .

Hunt out some bargains, and help charity too

It’s that time of year when every retailer wants our hard-earned cash and we are constantly tempted to part with it as those special offers are all around us.
But do we really need all these bargains, or are we just seduced into becoming serial impulse buyers?

At home, clutter and waste is all around us in one form or another. Things we don’t use or need – and, quite often, bought on impulse.

You know what happens after the big Black Friday sales?  I’ll tell you.  A lot of people who bought new big screen TVs will take them home, hook them up and then realise they need to do something with their old TVs.  Same is true with other things they bought.

Whether it be exercise equipment, bikes, toys, furniture, books, even high-end audio gear, they’ll want to get rid of the old to make room for the new.

A lot of unwanted items will end up at your local charity shop, which makes this a good time of the year to visit those stores – because they’ll be overflowing with goodies.  Chances are, you’ll find some real bargains there.
It’s win-win!

You pick up bargains, charities make more money

The best yet!

What a fantastic show. It was undoubtedly the best yet. I’ve been a bit low recently, but you good folk lifted me out of that. We all had a thoroughly great evening.

Pamela Hunt