Comedy Gold: Crucial rules for surviving this year’s Christmas family gathering.

*5 minutes of reading bliss*

It’s that time of year again; snow all around, Christmas carols ringing throughout the cold nights, wonderful food being shared around wonderful friends and family and the unmistakeable feeling that yet another unfulfilled New Years resolution is lurking around the corner…because your not actually going to go your local gym, are you?

“I’m going to be more positive, more social and take up a South Nepalian interspiritual zen yoga routine”. ~Saoirse mcTrendy.

Yeah right Saoirse, we all know you’ll be a revolutionary millennial for about 2 weeks, than you’ll regress to binge watching ‘Gossip Girl’ for the 5th time while ripping through a 6pack of Jaffa cakes.

  • Anyway, enough of the inevitable disappointment that will consume us after the New Year’s rush, let’s have a look at the main event of this period. That is, Christmas Day. This is the one day in the year where it’s socially acceptable to shamelessly gorge and gain 6kg of pure turkey stuffing.
  • This is when you can catch up with loved ones, share gifts and make cherished memories. Heart warming isn’t it?However, the inventors of Christmas deliberately inbuilt into the occasion a mechanism that also has the potential to cause mass awkwardness, feelings of uncomfortableness and unnecessary political discussions.

Mandatory Christmas Survival Checklist.

1. Do not be the last to arrive to your family gathering: This will result in many unwanted situations, trust us. For one, arriving last means when you arrive you become the center of attention. In this dangerous situation, be prepared to greet people one-by-one in a line of awkward demise.

Imagine walking into the kitchen of your auntie’s house, only to walk into a wall of relatives, while wondering who your going to greet first. It’s hellish.

  • It’s an inbuilt social phenomenon that your absolutely f*ucked the moment you have to make deliberate eye contact with members of family, while wearing a fake smile more fake than the fakest fake of fake American housewifes. At least they have the backup of facial Botox.
  • 2. Handling ‘the distant relative’ situation: we’ve all experienced it before… your thought process is a bit like this;
    • ‘oh look a fresh face, wait no that’s a relative, I have to say hello,but how?, sh*t their approaching me, is it Dave or Daniel, is it a man or a woman, f*ck, smile you idiot, make eye contact, put away your phone, prepare, brace for impact, breath….
    • “Ohhhh hiiiiiiiiiiiii” *shuffles feet, prepares for handshake, or is it a hug?, or is it a kiss?, stutters, stumbles, steps on their toes, engages in painful half hug cling.*
    • So avoid,avoid,avoid them completely. They’re happy to ignore you aswell.

    3. Awkward silences at the dinner table:

    Did you know it takes 5 seconds for a silence to become awkward? This ranks amongst the most highest mentally stressful and painful situations that can be experienced by a person; ranked right after getting kicked in the snéachta balls and burning your Brennan’s on a Saturday morning.

    • Don’t just butt in with “terrible weather we’re having at the moment” or “these roast potatoes are delish”. Instead, tactically stare at your food and to make it seem like your doing something, take a sip of your drink, look out the window or just light a candle and pray that another person is going to say something.
    • If all else fails, start a thought provoking conversation….for example “I think king is better than tayto”, or “I think Ireland should leave the EU” or “I think vegans won’t stop me eating rashers with my ballymalloe relish on a Sunday morning”
    • (maybe not the last one because you’ll be lynched by an angry mob of mutated vegetables).

    -For any chefs reading this, please note that the meat to vegetable ratio should be ‘3:1’.

    -For vegetarians it’s ‘quinoa burger: 1’

    • If a political discussion arises during your festive meal, than grab a pair of binoculars and watch in comfort as two un contempt members of the family shout it down between each other from opposite ends of the table. For full enjoyment, write ‘Sir David Attenborough’ on a napkin and prop it up against a glass.

    4: Present and gifts time:

    You’ve made it through all of this? Janey Mack, Jaeckers, Would you look at that.

    If it’s accidentally opening the toilet door when your uncle is using the jax or that your little paper Christmas hat has ripped :(, you’ve done well to survive. You’re not out of the woods yet, in fact, you’re entering one of the worst parts.

    Let’s set the scene: The family is sitting around the fire, the air is filled with expectation and anxious anticipation. You receive a nicely wrapped box, you shake it and have a little laugh (yeah your great aren’t you? You little comedian).

    Anyway, you open the wrapping paper, eyes wide, the world is looking intently at your reaction.

    28 year old Janet O’no It’s Another Hair Straightener told I.D.C….

    “Another babybliss hair straightener? I had 20 people looking at me, what could I do? I than remembered reading the Irish Daily Complainer and followed their steps to handle the situation. The next week I went to Tkmaxx and bought a cheeky Zara winter jacket. #smuggg”

    • If you’ve received a present that you already have, look absolutely ecstatic. Say things like “yess this is exactly what I wanted”
  • Chief Christmas psychologist Dr Matthew Thornton has told I.D.C HQ that this is the best way to deal with a present you already have.
  • “If you do receive a gift that you already have, make absolutely sure to say ‘Omer gawd it’s fantastic thannnnnks’ in as high a pitch as possible. To really sell it to the ignorant gift giver, deliberately read the card aloud to make it look as if you’re more grateful. To add the halo on your head, grab your shovel and dig as deep a hole as possible as to why your happy to receive the present”.

  • *make sure you have the receipt.

    *Repeat step 2 when leaving the gathering.

    MERRY CHRISTMAS, you’ve been amazing readers. Keep up with the support! 🙂

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