...and Indians, Tamals, Eritreans, Malaysians, Koreans, Bangladeshi, Thai, Myanmarese and the myriad other nationalities that kept This Once Great Island (TOGI) afloat during the past couple of weeks. Considering the fact that your average Shayne Public couldn't name the key players of Christianity, we seemed to embrace this holy festival with wide open credit and debit cards extra hard this year. It is likely that the only people to be vaguely useful over the christmas period were immigrants, and I for one felt distinctly ungracious after 12 months of bemoaning johnny foreigner's inexorable march across TOGI, when the nice Sikh guy who delivered my lifesaving post new-year's eve spicy meat feast pizza turned up with a free box of Nurofen. At 0530 on 01 Jan 06. Genius. That may sound quite patronising, but in contrast I saw Anglo Saxons doing the following over the holiday period: 1. Panic buying petrol because ITV News told them that Russia had cut off the (natural) gas supply to the Ukraine. Don't believe me? The petrol station on the big roundabout where the A414 meets the A10. In their droves. A bemused RTFQ on his morning constitutional asked a mildly hysterical woman driving one of those minging new Range Rovers what the panic was about: "The Russians" apparently. Get a grip. 2. Sliding, in a feck off gert camper van, down an icy hill on a B-Road in the Lake District. With the handbrake on and, wait for it, hands over the eyes. Actually I found that hilarious, so did the farmer who had tellingly parked his Hilux up and awaited a thaw before moving on. At least I think he found it funny, he didn't seem to speak english (NB: "Slape" means "very fecking icy" in Cumbrian) and as the wall into which the unlucky campers eventually parked wasn't his, he certainly seemed tickled. 3. Looking at me stupidly when I explained, after a number of hours on the three laned carparks that pass for TOGI's roads, that the coffee machine didn't work in their service station. Showing a remarkable grasp of his merchandise, the grumpy teenager behind the counter informed me that "coke's got coffee in it" (I think he meant caffeine and just stumbled on his words, at least I hope he did). Despite his assurances that the repair man had been called out, when fate directed me to the same service station on the return journey 5 days later the thing was still broken. I honestly believe this led to at least one major pile-up on the M6 as drivers struggled to undo cans one handed, got bubbles up their nose or tried to clean the furry-coke feeling from their teeth with their chamois leather. Indolent teenagers cost lives. 4. Completely mismanaging kids. I'm not going to labour this because frankly I could write a book on how bad Britons have become at raising children. Suffice it to say that if I drove my car with as much disregard and ineptitude as some control their hellish offspring, I'd be in jail for a long time. Say fecking 'no' to them; if they don't like it, smack them on their arrse until they do. It's not space science. 5. Likewise with dogs. If you're barren, pay for IVF or better still, get a hobby. No they are not your 'babies' you frigging freakshow. 6. FIGHTING - as in: blows to the face, actual bodily harm argy-bargy - over the last copy of the Daily Mail because it comes with a free Scrooge/Christmas Carol DVD. It wasn't even one of the decent versions with Muppets or Bill Murray, nor was it the Ben Dover special: "Christmas Anal." Fat women who watch too much Trisha are a manace to society - the only reason the police lay off them is because no one wants to do a Section 44 stop and search on some bloater in leggings who didn't shower after her morning bop-along to her celebrity exercise video. 7. Walking across the highstreet in Barrow in Furness in their pink fluffy slippers. Even if there was an earthquake my admin would be sufficiently sorted to allow me to put my bloody boots on. There's no excuse - and don't go to Barrow it's a hole. 8. Closing everything useful: doctors surgeries, pharmacies, the odd A&E, garages, pubs, B&Q, pubs simply because it's christmas. I've pulled my fair share of xmas and new year duties - sometimes at the same time - so I've no sympathy. Judging by the amount of block text messages I got on christmas day, you weren't doing anything fecking constructive with your time if you were off anyway. 9. Sending me block text messages to say happy chrimbo/new year. Some (my friends on here for example) sent me messages they had actually bothered to compose and send to me personally. I found those touching and I thank you. If I didn't reply it was because I couldn't feel my face or because I was watching "It's a Wonderful Life" with a bottle in my hand and tears in my eyes (I rarely make it past "ZuZu's petals" without blubbing like a teenager at a backstreet abortionists). Many of my friends, especially the marrieds (not you BDH), sent me generic messages such as: "We hope you have a wonderful Xmas and the new year brings you every happiness, Love the Dursleys" (or whatever). That says 3 things to me: a) even though we are married and therefore no doubt have a Laura Ashley address book with all our friends' addresses in it, we couldn't be arrsed to send you a card. b) We couldn't even be arrsed to text/call you personally c) we are so dull that we can afford to spend an hour on christmas day trying to work out how to send a group text. We're going to hell in a handbasket, and the Sikh will inherit the earth. Bloody right too, he's a top bloke.