It’s nearly Christmas

It’s nearly Christmas! And yes, the Coke trucks have been on the telly for at least two weeks by now. Holidays are coming.. holidays are coming… etc.


People questioned what sarnies and rissoles are in the comments for this one.

Sarnies are a colloquial term for sandwiches, as in ham sarnies or cheese and pickle sarnies. Tounge sarnies are something altogether different.

In Britain a rissole is a sort of cross between a meatball and a burger, fried and sometimes covered in breadcrumbs.

The real meaning of Christmas

In the interests of balance, here’s the other side of the Christmas equation…

The reason for the season

I got the light right in this one. I also seem to have got the tone right too – no fundamentalist Christians came gunning for me in the comments section of GoComics, not that I intended any offence anyway. This agnostic has a couple of Nativity sets out in his house every Christmas because the story of Jesus’ birth is where it all begins. And it’s a good story.


We don’t see many illuminated inflatables in Britain, but I see a lot of them in Clovis, NM. There’s something sad about them during the day – deflated Santas lying collapsed on a front lawn made of straw.


The light was better in this one. But people were far more interested in the Great British Bake-off in frame one.

The grand switch-on

Every Christmas for the last few years or so, the house at the end of my cul de sac has had progressively larger and more elaborate Christmas decorations put up outside it in support of the St Michael’s Hospice in St Leonards. It started off fairly small, with a few illuminated trees and tube lights affixed to the side of the house. Last year they built a ski run down the side of the house. This year they had a river.

Here’s the BBC news report on it. You’ll have to click here to view it as I can’t embed it in the blog.

It even made The Sun.

Apart from the night of the big switch-on which attracted crowds so great that it was impossible to drive into my road, and the subsequent month-long drizzle of cars crawling by the house and paying no attention to their driving, there was little disruption to our lives. The lights faced the main street and disn’t disturb us, and I think they also had their own electricity supply provided for them. In the cartoon, I exaggerated the effect they had on their neighbours for comic effect.

It took several attempts to get the Spielbergian light effect I wanted. This was my first go, and it ended up as more of a glowing mist than the blast of light I wanted.


Empty space

smith-pilcher-900-160108When you see a strip like this (or one which mainly consists of sets of eyes in darkness) you can usually guarantee that the cartoonist involved has fallen behind with his drawing and is desperately trying to catch up to a deadline. However, in this case, just for once, this was simply my reaction to how all the shops, houses and streetscapes in Hastings look now all the decorations have come down. Suddenly we move from the exuberance of Christmas to the bleak grey hangover of January.


smith-pilcher-899-160106Thanks to Eric Salinas of the ’Something about Celeste’ strip for providing me with today’s headline in the comments section for this strip. I was going to go with something more like ‘Miaow-hican’.

The Christmas Bunny


This is one of those images that just suddenly came to me unbidden, and I wasn’t going to waste it.