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Here we are and it is almost Christmas. Indeed, many of you who are friends on Facebook will already have been subjected to some element of the Andrews-Cayley household’s version of good cheer. (You can always see more of what I’m talking about on my Facebook page if you happened to have missed out.)

Consider this gang of ridiculous animated whatevers. They’re silly. They’re certainly tasteless, lacking in artistic merit, crass, commercial. And yet…their annual FB appearance is actually requested, looked for and I have to admit to a considerable amount of pleasure in opening the box in which they are stored and taking them out each year.

They remind me of my childhood when, at Christmas, in our family silliness reigned supreme. Oddly too, they have a sort of sacredness to them. They reinforce in me the need to celebrate—not in ignorance of the fact that terrible things are happening; that we may be entering dark and difficult times. Rather because of that.

The times of my childhood were not easy. The threat of nuclear disaster was real; there was rationing of food, coal, clothing. World War II seemed still to hang over everything. Memories of loss and battle, bombing and devastation were strong in everyone’s minds. That’s what made Christmas so important. Somehow the coming of Christmas meant that the grey, cold cloud would one day be lifted. The coming of Christmas meant that there was hope.

I know that for many this is a time of anxiety and loneliness. I wish that I could change that but I can’t. All I can do is what I know how to. To take in the season with joy. To send out good wishes to all who might like to have them. To rejoice with dedication and commitment in my own odd and peculiar way.

One more thing: if you live around Ottawa and didn't get an invitation to Stories from the Ages: Redux. Four Sunday Evenings of Wonder Tales, know we want you. Further details: click here

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