Seven less-fortunate people to patronise this Christmas if you're middle-class

CHRISTMAS is a time to remember those less middle-class than ourselves. Here Charlotte Phelps suggests some who will rightly be eternally grateful for your one-off generosity.

Local old people 

Many of them have no visitors at Christmas, so you don’t have to worry about making an effort with your conversation. Just say you’re glad they’re not dead yet and let them ramble on about whatever tinned horror they’re having for Christmas dinner. Part of the trade-off for your valuable time is that they have interesting stories about the War. If they don’t, end the visit immediately and find one who wasn’t a coward.


They work so hard, although to be fair our private tutor did all the heavy lifting with Jemimah and Zac. They’re not that badly paid, so your present is really just a gesture of your appreciation – a small bag of fun-size Mars Bars should be enough for all your kids’ teachers. Definitely don’t get drawn into a game of one-upmanship with other parents. If teachers want to guzzle Moët, they should have gone to Oxbridge and got a job in the media or the City. 

The homeless

The homeless complain about being viewed as an embarrassing social problem rather than human beings. So instead of loose change or a sandwich I give them a normal Christmas present without any stigma. Be careful though – some of them are on drugs and can easily become aggressive, like the one in a sleeping bag outside Lush when I kindly gave him a DVD of Frozen

Care home staff

If you’ve got an elderly parent safely tucked away in a care home, be sure to remember the underpaid staff. Get them something nice, like some M&S Jasmine and Pomegranate air freshener. Maybe they can remember to use it next time you visit a room full of flatulent, piss-reeking oldies.

Poor people 

Obviously you don’t want to visit them in person because of lice and getting mauled by their XL Bully, and that’s why donating cans of food was invented. In Waitrose, simply buy a few extra tins of something Christmassy – like carrots – and pop them in the collection box. Don’t forget some treats – a bag of prunes is great for sharing and much healthier than Hotel Chocolat.

Children without toys

Nothing gives you a warm glow inside like getting rid of some of the mountain of crap in your loft. Obviously your offspring will want to keep their favourite teddies and dolls, but there are still plenty of knackered old toys for poor kids to cherish. A Sindy with no head, a game of Simon covered in leaked battery acid, a broken xylophone with half the keys missing – all of these are wonderful toys in comparison to no toys at all.

Africans or donkeys 

Both Africans and donkeys get starved and made to live in terrible conditions, so it’s a toss-up between them. I favour Africans, because donkeys have always annoyed me – they’re basically just underachieving horses. And I know a donation to Oxfam will start to make a difference straight away. Once I’ve popped a £2 coin in the envelope I feel I’ve done my bit and can treat myself to a £400 Jigsaw party dress completely guilt-free.

Sign up now to get
The Daily Mash
free Headlines email – every weekday

Rural couple sell country cottage to live dream life of making shitloads of money in city

A COUPLE have given up their life in the country to pursue their dream of earning enormous salaries and living in a tiny property in London. 

Tom Logan and Donna Sheridan, who grew up and lived in Dorset, decided they had had enough of the stresses of running a small chicken farm in a close-knit country community. 

As a result they sold their four-bedroom country cottage to a middle-class family with a ludicrously romantic view of the countryside and bought a one-bedroom flat in Hackney.

Logan said: “I think we both felt oppressed by the pace of country life, the sub-Heartbeat existence in which the highlight of your life is the fortnightly pub quiz. 

“We both decided we wanted the excitement of a 13-hour working day making stupid money in hedge funds. We both felt we were ready for a faster pace of life, with bullshit power lunches and not having time to go to the toilet.

“It’s so much better being a big swinging dick in the City. And the fumes! I feel as if I’m living the words of Samuel Johnson: he who tires of air pollution is tired of life.” 

Sheridan said: “I just love the buzz of long Tube journeys and having so many armpits to smell. I don’t think I’ve taken the time to step back and really appreciate a grimy tunnel before. 

“Best of all we’re making money we’ll never get time to spend and we’ve got a strong chance of total burn-out at 40. This is the life.”