IT'S mayhem out there.
Calendar carnage. Next year (sorry, this year) is already horribly reduced. "25% off!" scream the signs, as if they'll give you 2014 without the dark, dismal months of January, February and March. "50% off!" Leap straight to summer. "100% off!" Forget 2014 entirely!
Human beings are fabulously sophisticated. We all have smartphones that can probably operate a rover on Mars. But if we don't have that simple, household object hanging from the wall in the kitchen (almost always the kitchen), we can barely function. Take your house. The year has already begun to gallop away and you're still using those "overhang" (hangover?) days from December, the January days printed confusingly at the end of December, only more faintly as if January knows it has no right appearing in last year like this.
For some reason, a new calendar failed to emerge at Christmas. You assumed the Keeper of the Calendar (KoC) was buying one for you, and the KoC assumed you were buying one for her or him. Ah yes, the traditional problem of communication that curiously seems to keep most marriages together. One of you should have put it on the calendar but that would have spoilt the surprise.
So now you have to decide which one. Your daughter is sorted, of course. Santa gave her the 1D calendar and the boys grin out at you every time you pass her room.
Theirs doesn't appear to have all those mysterious items on it such as "Bank Holiday, Ascension Islands". The boys probably own the Ascension Islands.
The KoC suggested that you might like a No Direction calendar, but that was simply being unkind.
Mind you, a calendar of lost-looking people isn't so unlikely. There are certainly some oddities out there. A quick investigation this week revealed "Urban Decay", "British Ducks" and even "Pigeons 2014". There was also "Star Trek", with its interesting "warp speed through November" option.
The usual questions were raised again. Why only Nuns Having Fun, never monks? Why no Dogs Versus Squirrels, a traditional battle that needs recorded?
Why no Downton Shabby, the famous house with torn sofas and a couple of old fridges on the lawn?
Fortunately, however, there was one treasure amid the dross.
The lads stare out at you now. Let us all with one voice wish Goats In Trees the world over a very happy new year.
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