Monday, December 10, 2007

On Sunday, I was in Birmingham.

(What were you doing there, Andrew? Trying to leave, of course.)

As I left New Street Station, I was surprised to see a huge sign saying "Merry Christmas" in large, yellow, illuminated letters.

I was even more surprised to notice that, strung across Cor
poration Street was an even bigger illuminated Nativity scene, complete with multi-coloured angels and illuminated baby Jesus. (I believe that there is a pop group called "The Fluorescent Bible", so it could be a reference to that.)

Proceeding up New Street towards Victoria Square, there were further illuminations of Christmas tree baubles; and a large, gaudy, allegedly German street market where you could buy a small pieces of chocolate on a sticks for £4, plain pretzels for £2 and have you photograph taken in a sled with a man dressed as Father Christmas for more money than I care to think about.

Outside the Town Hall was another big yellow "Merry Christmas" and a huge Christmas Tree.

Inside the horrible bubble wrapped shopping mall that the Mothership has dumped on top of the old bull-ring market, the "Entertainer" toy-shop had given a third of its frontage over to a life-sized crib. (It has also done this in Bristol and Solihul. In 2001, the chain declined to sell Harry Potter toys on the very reasonable grounds that they would turn children into Satanists, so it is conceivable that the company has an agenda of some kind, but, astonishingly, no-one has so far ordered them to remove Mary and Joseph and replace them with Devaki and Vasudeva.)

Outside the railway station, there were posters inviting people to attend an open air carol service, introduced by the Mayor and the Bishop and led by a gospel choir.

It seems that the ancient midlands tradition of Winterval, celebrated every year since 1998 (with the exception of 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2006) has fallen into disuse. It's political correctness gone mad, I tell you.

1 comment:

TM said...

Speaking of which...