Christmas is pretty meta these days. Take the subject of food, for example. I'm not saying there's anything wrong at all with over-eating, but what is it about Christmas that makes people feel the need to provide a constant, self-loathing commentary on their own greed? Was your Christmas dinner really so different to mine, or to anyone else's, for that matter, that it was worth taking to social media to parade it in front of the world? We all ate too much of the same thing and we all feel similarly guilty. There's no need to broadcast that, especially when there are 500 million other people on Twitter all trying and failing to say something profound or funny about Christmas.
Depressed by last year's festival of dull and inane uniformity, I tried to pre-empt the internet this time round by scouring its loneliest corners for things that would help turn my December 25th into the most profoundly sad Christmas ever.
Of course, celebrations start far before December 25th. I remember when I was a child, I would wake up each morning in the last month of the year and gleefully tear open the window on my chocolate advent calendar, because nothing quite says "Christmas" like a mouthful of disgusting, gritty chocolate at 7AM. But now no one will buy me a calendar and I'm too old and angry at the world to buy one for myself. So imagine my joy when I stumbled across the ginvent calendar.
Leaving aside the fact that its name doesn't make any sense, what better way could there be to mainline Christmas joy into your heart each morning? After all, it's literally impossible to be depressed when you're drinking gin – it's why Hemingway lived such a long, happy life. However, that relative optimism took a fast nose-dive when I found out the calendar cost £80. Which also makes me think the manufacturers haven't really grasped the economic status of their target demographic – solitary, middle-aged men who would rather spend a fiver on a bottle of paint-stripper gin than a train ticket to visit their families. So, instead of the ginvent calendar, I just went and bought the cheapest bottle of gin I could find.
I was wrong to doubt the powers of the ginvent calendar. The bottle did not last 25 days. It barely lasted 25 minutes.
I'd been chatting to a girl over the internet for months and she'd agreed to fly over for Christmas if I paid for her plane ticket. I sent her some of my money and spent the rest on this super cute glove – a smitten, so that we could hold hands in a snug little love blanket.
Apparently she had to help her mum bake a pie, or something. So she couldn't fly over in the end. She still has the £550 I'd saved up from cleaning festival toilets all summer, though, so I'm sure our hands will be lovlngly intertwined beneath this smitten soon enough.
Luckily NASA scientists were able to utilise some of the most advanced techniques in the world of upholstery to create this hugely realistic replication of a human arm, so I could still feign some kind of human interaction while I tried not to cry during the Top Gear Christmas special.
Despite there not being a Top Gear Christmas special this year, it really ticked all the boxes. If the only box on the checklist is "horribly uncomfortable".
This neat little gift takes all the buddies you have online and turns them into a mosaic so that you can show off how popular you are to any visitors you might be expecting (although let’s be honest, you’ve only had one visitor in the past month and that was the debt collectors).
Food, of course, is another huge part of the festivities. But for some reason, the catering industry seems to massively neglect the alone in their marketing campaigns. Thank your lucky stars that I found this delicious Christmas dinner in a can. It even heats itself up so you don’t need to put money in the gas meter to eat it!
It appears that the depressed of the UK like to plan in advance, though, as they were all sold out by the time I got round to ordering mine. Oh well, I’ll just settle for a delicious Iceland readymeal for one as usual. There’s always something comforting about routine.
Follow Patrick on Twitter: @spirit_of_yoof
More incredibly cheery festive stuff: