There’s no Christmas tree or decorations in Rich Mansions. I don’t send cards either. I don’t mean to be an unappreciative Mr Grouchy – it’s nice to receive cards. It’s just that I find the ritualistic exchange of shop-purchased cards an odd custom. Original and creative greetings are great, so maybe I’ll try one of those next year and join the festive spirit.
My concession to yuletide cheer in my home is nuts. You’ve got to get nuts, haven’t you? Even Ebenezer Scrooge was partial to some hazelnuts by the fire. What about those Brazil nuts though? They’d send a squirrel to the dentist. I sheared my metal nutcrackers trying to bust one of the fuckers open. Look!
500g of nuts I couldn’t open forced a special trip to Tesco’s. What kind of man doesn’t have nutcrackers in his kitchen? I need nutcrackers, dammit!
I spend ages on the utensils aisle. A good fifteen minutes. I get aisle blindness, where you see everything but the thing you want. Spatulas, forks, tongs, knives, corkscrews and potato peelers are all there in abundance. Nutcrackers? Forget it. I break one of my own rules and approach a staff member for assistance. She looks me up and down as if I’ve asked her to help me locate some particularly deviant pornography of dubious legality, then spends what seems like eternity doing exactly what I’ve just done – staring at all the bloody spud peelers as if in a trance.
“Hello? I’ve done this bit. I’m not retarded, I just wondered if you knew where they are. If you don’t, fine..” I don’t say. I’m not a sociopath, so I stand there awkwardly while she plods up and down the aisle.
She takes my arm and leads me to the ‘whole foods’ aisle, where loose nuts are on display. No nutcrackers there either! We’ve picked up another shelf-drone on the way, who is staring gormlessly at the nuts like an anesthetised zombie. Suddenly there’s a third employee involved in the search, and I’m surrounded.
The latest member of the nutcracker gang settles the matter. He says that LAST year, they sold nutcrackers, but people used the nutcrackers to open the nuts in the store and ate them without paying, so they stopped selling nutcrackers.
What an over-reaction. You could almost say they used a sledgehammer to crack a nut, which is ironically what I’ll be doing if I can’t find an alternative source of nutcrackers. Where does one buy nutcrackers FROM, if not your local supermarket? I stropped my way down to the beer aisle with a pouty lip to make things better with alcohol. Life is tough.