Among the dozens of Christmas cards that my father has hanging across the beams and above the aga and on the mantlepiece here in Shipston ,is the one pictured below from The Guardian. It thanks him for being a loyal reader in 2016 as he has the BBC's sister publication delivered every day.
My father, being a man of faith, takes a dim view of cards that fail to reflect the story of the nativity on the front cover. A robin scores less highly than a picture of the three kings. But at least the two robin cards I have counted mention the C word inside. The Guardian, natch, avoids that altogether, sticking to Festive Greetings. Yes but what Festival you godless fucking liberals? Come on you can use the C word if you try. But they won't as that would be some sort of "ist"
And so, although the Guardian's card hangs next to the aga, my father is cross. He also notes that almost every articlein the loathsome paper, refers to Brexit and, though he voted the wrong way, he at least has moved on. Then there is George Michael. My father had vaguely heard of Saint George but having seen the Guardian devote six pages to the man, decided he did not want to know any more. The picture of Saint George in a crucifixation pose on the front page was perhaps a little too close to the bone at this time of year. Owen Jones's eulogy to George as a champion of cottaging really pushed my father too far.
Indeed, there have been more and more complaints in recent weeks about the self righteous rubbish that the Guardian publishes. A lifelong sinner repenteth, we should rejoice as there are plans to switch to The Times in the New Year. That is one more nail in the coffin of the heavily loss making rag.
But what about Cyril? Cyril is the rabbit of my incredibly earnest sister N - the one who gave her even more earnest husband membership of the Labour Party as a Christmas present. N has been using Dad's used Guardians to line Cyril's hutch. Will she tolerate Cyril sitting on top of a Murdoch owned paper? Such are the appalling dilemnas that deluded lefties must face in 2017.
As for Cyril he has my admiration as the one being in the UK who has successfuly shat on Polly Toynbee & Owen Jones for a whole year. Nice One Cyril, nice one son.