Here is the original action man. His name is Buzz Aldrin. He is a doctor, a Colonel and an astronaut. It is a little known fact that he spent 289 hours and 53 minutes in space which is a lot more than That Nice Mr Parkin-even though TNMP always tells us that Father Christmas flies round the world, 'just like an astronaut'. Personally I don't think he quite understands what it involves.
So, I try and explain about the other year and the beard thing.
'There was a fly in it,' I say, 'I was trying to get it out of your beard before it went up your nose-I was only 7 and 1/2.'
But Father Christmas, That Nice Mr Parkin, is reaching into his post office sack.
'Here's your gifty, little boy, now take it!' says Santa grabbing at his beard as though I'm going to rip it off again. 'Happy Christmas and GOODBYE!'
Santa's elf, That Nice Mrs Parkin, comes rushing through and pushes me out of the back tent-flap.
'Hello, dear,' says mum. 'Did you say sorry?'
She is sipping something hot and steamy. Dad comes over with three mince pies. They are looking happy again. I decide to keep it that way.
'Yes,' I say.
They beam at one another. 'What did Father Christmas give you, Wilfred?'
I unwrap the present. It is an action man.
'Oh really!' says mum. 'You cannot have that!'
'Why not?' I ask.
Dad snatches the toy out of my hands. 'We don't want you to play with army things, Wilfred-they're not very nice! We'll go and swap it for something nicer-STAY THERE!'
'But Dexter's got loads of action men and guns at home,' I begin to say.
But my mum and dad have gone back into the tent. Dad did not even leave me with a mince pie.