How to endure Christmas Day with your f**king family

IF you’re spending Christmas with your family you’ll likely go insane with irritation in minutes. Here’s how to endure a long day in their company.

Leave the TV on permanently

Thanks to streaming channels there’s an endless supply of programming to distract family members from talking to each other. Simply find shows you can all agree on then sit there in a slack-jawed trance while autoplay works its magic.


The only thing more difficult than spending time with your family is spending time with them while sober. Neck an entire cauldron of mulled wine to block out your mum’s prying questions about your love life and your dad’s sprout-fuelled flatulence.

Go out for a walk

Family homes can feel like prisons. Going out for a walk is the equivalent of day release, because they’re a chance to fantasise about slipping away, jumping on a train and starting a new life somewhere else. This brief respite may stop your spirit being broken by the Mrs Brown’s Boys Christmas special.

Start an argument

Everyone was going to start shouting and screaming at each other at some point so you might as well take control of it. Conveniently bring up a thorny family issue immediately then spend the remaining hours in the blissful silence of simmering resentment.

Remember that they hate this too

Unless you’re one of those weird families that all get along swimmingly, everyone is secretly gutted they narrowly missed out on a Christmas free from insufferable relatives. And if you can’t relate to that, you’re the insufferable relative nobody wants to see.

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'Succulent roast ostrich is served': Christmas dinner with Jacob Rees-Mogg

YULETIDE greetings! There are many wholesomely Christian traditions to which we Rees-Moggs subscribe. If you too want a decent, honest, British Christmas, take heed. 

Vintage aperitifs

Before settling down for your meal, it is important to awaken the palette with an aperitif. Why not browse your wine cellar for a vintage bubbly, perhaps one of your ‘77 Dom Perignons? Keep the cheap £150 plonk for guests.

The bird

The centrepiece of your meal. Ostrich is a delicious bird, and far superior to most festive fowl. If for some reason you do not have a dear friend able to source exotic game from the colonies, then content yourself with something more pedestrian. Pheasant, or peacock perhaps.

Side dishes

Any Christmas meal relies on its sides. Like Wales, Scotland and the other one, they are the less important items which help complete the union. I favour boned capon in aspic – a castrated rooster carved and set in gelatin. Positively scrumptious and very popular in the Victorian era, which I firmly believe we are still living in. 

Don’t neglect your staff

Christmas is a time of cheer, so your servants should be allowed to let their hair down. Metaphorically, of course, as they must at all times sport the short back and sides stipulated in their contracts. So I’m happy to give them an extra 15 minutes for their lunch hour – Christmas comes but once a year, after all!


While the anarchic Mary Berry and Prue Leith have started a regrettable trend for modern cakes, we prefer to stay traditional. A simple Queen Victoria sponge is the perfect dessert to round off a festive feast, before settling down for a good imperial Christmas film like Lawrence of Arabia.

Parlour games

After the meal it’s time for parlour games. I shall never forget the joy we all felt last year when young Sixtus successfully guessed The Confessions of St. Augustine during charades. Marvellous fun and a cracking good read, especially in the original Latin.