It's just asking for trouble isn't it? It was with much gloom I discovered that December 2011 is officially Tie Month (http://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/tie-month/ - honestly, I don't make this stuff up).
Why am I so gloomy? Simply because as a bloke I know that this gives everyone a golden opportunity to be 'terribly witty' and 'awfully original' by giving me ties for Christmas.
Nothing says 'Happy Christmas' like a yard of polyester. It gets even worse when the tie happens to be a novelty tie. This is the type which includes a picture of what presumably the artist thought a reindeer would look like if stuffed down a few million chimneys. The final straw is when you find that by pressing said caribou's crimson hooter a wailing sound vaguely reminiscent of Joe Pasquale on helium playing the kazoo begins. Of course, there is no off button, and the nose is precisely positioned so that when wearing the tie it is activated every time you lean forward and brush the desk. But Christmas is very much the time of year for novelties and for letting your hair down a little. It's one of the only times when you can get away with wearing things which normally would see you sectioned.
From antler horns to mittens in the shape of Christmas puddings, and from novelty ties which even snowmen melt in order to escape to flashing red Rudolph noses, it's an interesting thought to consider what other occasions haven't been overtaken by such corny novelties. Anniversaries, for instance.
Imagine if a Golden Anniversary was a traditional time when young women turn up dressed only in gold paint (a la Bond), men wore shiny gold suits, women wore gold coin earrings and men wore novelty ties with buttons which when pressed initiate a rendition of Spandeau Ballet's 'Gold'. Of course, the traditional meal would be golden (chicken) nuggets with Gold Bars for dessert. Then of course there is the joyous occasion of the birth of a new baby.
This could be a great opportunity for all of the family to come dressed in novelty plastic nappies, with men wearing novelty ties which look uncannily like a morphine drip, and which when pressed whine a rendition of 'Baby Love' by the Supremes (or 'Baby One More Time' if it's twins.) The traditional plastic badge in the shape of a happy little sperm crossing the finishing line would of course be hugely popular, and for the food it would be anything from lumps of coal to cherry tree leaves (or whatever craving is currently in vogue).
From the once in a lifetime (usually) vasectomy to the funeral, there are so many occasions in life as yet untouched by the same hand which took the birth of Christ and the manifestation of God on Earth and decided that such a religious sacred and significant occasion is best represented by an obese bloke, a malformed reindeer and a load of baubles.
Not forgetting the novelty ties. Perhaps the powers that be are missing a trick. Perhaps you can think of occasions which are still sadly lacking when it comes to tackiness. Do feel free to share your suggestions, and of course, feel free to offload your personal resentments by revealing the tackiest things you've been given for Christmas, all in the name of a little Yule tide fun. Go on - it's terribly therapeutic to get it off your chest! By the way - on a brighter note this Thursday is Brownie Day (http://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/brownie-day/) - I intend to stock up well in advance!