Thursday, 26 November 2009

The All New, New Model Army

Despite having one of the coolest names for an army ever, life under Oliver Cromwell was not a barrel of laughs. Not only did he close down inns, theaters and ban the majority of sports, but the Puritan nut job also banned Christmas because it was more about the eating, drinking, dancing and having fun rather than the birth of Jesus. He did inspire Elvis Costello to sing a cracking song about him though.
Cromwell said that he talked to God directly and discussed his plans for battles with the big man personally although we now find it hard to think that any country today could be ruled over by a warmongering leader who talked to God directly about his plans to send his troops into battle. Ahem.
Although Cromwell was a sandwich short of a picnic he did have a point about Christmas because despite its origins, it's all about Santa, snowmen and reindeer now. Try finding anything related to Christmas now with a picture of Jesus on it and you will be disappointed.
The problem is that Jesus is just not cool. When you have magicians nowadays who can make the Statue of Liberty disappear or catch a bullet in their teeth, then turning water into wine just seems a bit, well, crap.
What Jesus needs is a professional PR job done on him because the other fictional character, Santa, is what Christmas is all about and the Churchy types know it. As an atheist, i'm more than happy to see Jesus and all his disciples pushed aside and a jolly fat man hauled wheezing into his place but in an unexplainable twist, i dislike the way it has turned into a grubby, money spinning commercial exercise where it isn't the thought that counts but how much you spent.
Cromwell began putting together the New Model Army by firstly rounding up all his relatives to form the core of his own regiment to take on the King's army so Auntie Freda, Uncle George, cancel your bingo night next week because we got a revolution to perform. Better not mention it to Auntie Lesley though, you know what she's like around men in uniform. We'd never get her out of the barracks.


Cody Bones said...

Here's your holiday laugh. I am a descendant of the Lord Protector himself. From us here in the states, Happy Thanksgiving to all that celebrate, and to those of you in the UK, I'm thankful for all of you, especially Lucy and Cheezy

Cheezy said...

And a very Happy Thanksgiving to you, Cody! Hope you had a good one.

Descended from Crowell eh? Wow... Shame he was a murderous thug, as well as a killjoy. But no doubt you knew that already.

And we all have our crosses to bear... Just the other day I met a bloke who's descended from John Felton, the man who murdered the Duke of Buckingham in Portsmouth in 1628. He did it "for the good of Protestantism"... but also because Buckingham owed him some money and wouldn't pay up!

(This piece of history was later used - and changed a bit - by Dumas when he wrote The Three Musketeers).

It's wonderful who you meet in London pubs... (granted sometimes they're not as interesting as that)...

Cheezy said...

And here's an interesting voice in favour of keeping the Christianity in Christmas - Richard Dawkins:

As an atheistic person myself, I can definitely see where he's coming from.

I love Christmas, and I think that uber-liberal do-gooders who want to dilute its traditions are severely misguided.

(Of course, they always say they do it for the good of people from 'other cultures' who live among us... but none of these people, in my experience, have any problem at all with the traditional western, Christian way of celebrating Christmas).

Cheezy said...

Typo in my first post:

"Descended from Crowell eh?

'Crowell' must be some unholy hybrid between Oliver Cromwell and Simon Cowell. The most vicious creature ever spawned!

Falling on a bruise said...

Merry Thanksgiving to you also Cody, i guess it was a bank holiday there so i hope you put your feet up and forgot about making sqillions for the day.
I am very impresed that you have such a famous great, great, great, great...great, great grandfather. I feel guilty for calling him a nutjob now. Hey, if you had been around in the early 17th century you would have been in his army and might have got a line in Costellos song.

Cody Bones said...

Not only do I have my feet up, I am up here in the great northwoods of Wisconsin. Oh, and Lucy, don't feel bad about calling him a nutjob, he was... I hoping that the wackiness has been breed out throughout the centuries, if not, Oh well. It is deer season up here in Wisconsin, and there are a great deal of armed men wandering the woods that might be amendable to the formation of an army, on the other hand, fuck it, I'm going to put my feet up, drink beer, eat leftover turkey, and watch the snow fall while watching many many football games. In the words of the English, I can't be arsed to form an army.

Falling on a bruise said...

You will let us know if one of the hunters accidently shoots himself in the foot or a deer tosses him 20ft in the air won't you Cody. Its raining here and cold here and i need something to cheer myself up.