A word that is bandied about with the same vigour as warm prosecco at a work do at this time of year is Perfect. It can be found in TV show titles, insidiously lurking in Google search results, ready to trip us up and make us feel inadequate at every turn. “How to cook the perfect Christmas turkey”. “The Perfect Roast Potatoes“. You can even watch the 6.5/10 IMDB rated film A Perfect Christmas, which is sadly not available on Netflix.
It’s bedfellow Ultimate also has a good run of it during the month of December – with “How to create the Ultimate Christmas dinner” and “The Ultimate Christmas Day menu” serving as reminders that everything we’ve eaten and drunk on 25th December up until this point must have been bang average because it wasn’t covered in goose fat.
You can even go double bubble in this Telegraph article titled “The Ultimate guide to having the Perfect Christmas tree.” – because woe betide you if one bauble is slightly off centre.
The window for creating your Ultimate Perfect Christmas is rapidly closing. It’s Christmas Eve, shops are shutting in a few hours. The prospect of finding the Ultimate present for your other half is disappearing like the contents of that tin of Quality Street you opened last night whilst watching Elf (green triangles and big purple ones first, naturally).
The Perfect stockings you planned to make remain as a stash of fabric in the drawer, never to fulfil it’s festive destiny. The hand lettered table decorations you saved to a Christmas Pinterest board fell at the first hurdle when you realised you write like a dog clutching a pen between it’s claws for the first time. You failed to buy a Poinsettia, there is no handmade holly wreath on your front door, and you have run out of cinnamon scented candles. This is so not what an ultimately perfect Christmas looks like.
Today you have two options: You can choose to go full Stress-tive by running around like you’ve been possessed by the spirit of Kirstie Allsopp on a one woman Christmas mission, simultaneously mulling wine whilst weaving placemats, spending an eye watering amount on floral arrangements that will be drooping by Boxing Day, only to fall asleep mid-mince pie at 8pm from sheer exhaustion.
Or go down the Festive route; watch all of the seasonal Friends episodes back-to-back in your pyjamas, wrap your gifts with similar skill to a cat let loose on the sticky tape dispenser, and remind yourself about what Christmas is really about: not being at work, not being subjected to the usual rules of eating and drinking (yes I WILL have a Bucks Fizz at 10am thank you very much) and not feeling guilty about any of it.
Merry bloody Christmas.