Think of England would like to wish all of its millions of avid readers around the world a very Merry Christmas, and promises to return bigger and badder than ever in the New Year.
Since nobody could ever describe TofE as 'listless' (hah!), I will leave 2005 in a traditional manner: with a load of Top Things...
Top 4 Lines to Belt Out Lustily in Christmas Carols and Songs:
1) Lo! He abhors not the virgin’s womb (O Come All Ye Faithful)
2) Don we now our gay apparel! (Deck the Halls)
3) Five Gold Rings! (The 12 Days of Christmas)
4) and best of all: Glooooooooooooooo - oooooooooooooo -ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo -ooooooooooo - ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooria! Hosannah in Exclesis! (Ding Dong Merrily on High)
Top Fifteen Things Compared to Hitler, the Nazis and Nazism on Blogs in 2005:
1) George W Bush
2) The United Nations
3) The Roman Catholic Church
5) The Religious Right
7) Tony Blair and the Labour spin-doctors
8) The Tory party
10) City folk who want to ban fox-hunting
12) The Pro-life movement
13) The Pro-choice movement
14) The War On Terror
15) Harry Potter
Top 10 Reasons Why the World is Going to Hell in a Handbasket:
2) Secular modern rationalism
3) Intelligent Design
4) Binge drinking and 24 hour licensing
5) The War on Terror
6) Janet Jackson’s nipple.
7) The ageing population
8) Economic migration
9) Mobile telephones
10) Harry Potter.
Top 5 Suspect Interpretations of Harry Potter:
1) It is a pagan heresy designed to sneakily undermine religion by encouraging kids to dress up in pointy hats and cast spells
2) It is religious allegory designed to sneakily undermine secularism, with Harry in the role of Messiah and Dumbledore as John the Baptist
3) It is an allegory of Star Wars, which is itself an allegory of Narnia, which is itself an allegory of the Gospels. Harry is Jesus Skywalker the Lion, and Obi Wan Kenobe is Dumbledore the Baptist, or something.
4) It is a racist white supremacy allegory, in which Muggle children are discriminated against and excluded from Hogwarts purely because they are born without magical powers.
5) It’s a children’s story, you know, for kids (not very popular, that one)
Whatever your favourite susperstition, spiritual comfort blanket or soul food happens to be, may it keep you toasty and warm this Christmas.