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Deck the halls and lose your wifi

THE FIRST Christmas card of the season dropped through the letterbox of Blackadder Towers before November was out. That is absolutely ridiculous. I’ve just checked the last posting date and you’ve got until December 21 to post things first class. It means I probably won’t even write my cards until the 20th.

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There’s a lot to be said for leaving things until the last minute. The British regulator Ofcom has warned that fairy lights can cause electrical interference and bring your broadband connections to a halt. Put your decorations up now and risk losing your wifi. Basically, your fairy lights can slow down your wi-fi or, horror of horrors, stop it working all together. Imagine that on Christmas Day? You’d have to talk to those ancient drunken relatives instead of whiling away the day slagging them off to your ‘friends’ on Facebook.

Think of all those families, with their myriad of gadgets descending on homes this holiday, all trying to connect to the same broadband network? In my day you just had to make sure you had a kitchen drawer full of triple-A batteries and everything would run smoothly.

MEANWHILE, TV bosses have promised to show fewer repeats on BBC1 this Christmas. That just leads me to believe there will be a hell of a lot of repeats on the Beeb’s other channels. Auntie has defended her position saying that viewers like repeats and that many people welcome the chance to tune into old favourites.

Mark Linsey, acting director of television, pledged that BBC1 would focus its money between 6pm and 10.30pm over the Christmas holidays, when most people are watching. He said: “We are still finalising our schedules, but I can promise you that in BBC1 peak time more that 90 per cent of programmes will be brand new”.

Highlights will include a ‘soap’ bringing together Charles Dickens characters. The mind boggles. If that’s not dumbing down I don’t know what is.

IF YOU’VE always dreamed of getting a Pirelli calendar in your Christmas stocking you’ll be extremely disappointed with the 2016 offering.

The 43rd edition of the calendar, which has been created by the American photographer Annie Leibovitz, features no nude models. Instead it abandons naked supermodels to feature ‘women of achievement’ with some clothes on. It includes 13 women who are apparently of outstanding professional, social, cultural, sporting and artistic accomplishment. The calendar features the likes of Serena Williams, wearing the biggest pair of Bridget Jones pants I have ever seen, Amy Schumer and Yao Chen. Oddly, Yoko Ono also features posing in a top hat and tuxedo jacket.

The Pirelli calendar is an institution. You put a woman photographer in charge of the photoshoot and suddenly there are pictures of not particularly attractive women wearing a strange collection of non-sexy clothes. It’s political correctness gone mad.

IT HAS been claimed that the climate change summit in Paris, which aims to tackle global warming, will itself pump out an estimated 300,000 tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Around 50,000 people have travelled from the four corners of the earth and most arrived by plane from as far afield as New Zealand, Sydney and Bermuda. Let’s hope the talks aren’t a load of hot air.

FINALLY, spare a thought for the children of Reigate Park Primary School in Mackworth, Derby, who will miss out on their Christmas carol concerts this year. The school head Penny Brown has cancelled concerts because she is not comfortable about 360 children having to cross the A52 to walk to the church half-a-mile away.

Furious parents have now accused her of cancelling Christmas after children were also left in tears when she cancelled two festive-themed craft days, where children and parents make Christmas cards. Bah humbug, I say!

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Kevan Blackadder

Written by Kevan Blackadder

Kevan Blackadder is a media consultant who runs Blackadder Media Limited. Kevan was previously editor of the Gloucestershire Echo and assistant editor of the Bristol Post. A Cumbrian who moved to the South West “for a couple of years” in the 1980s, he can’t quite believe he’s been there ever since.

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