Monday, December 18, 2006
So here is my first Christmas card to you. And actually it is the first ever Christmas card. It was made in 1843 by John Callcott Horsley
He only did 100 so he must have been a bit sad and lonely because The Parents send out about 3000. If you want to make your own Christmas card you can click on the Christmas trees for some festive fun - honest.
So, I am squished in between two people who both have puffy jackets on. They look like two blown up lifeboats with tiny people peeping out from inside. They are mostly silent and keep their beady eyes on the tent doorway.
'I can tell you about crop circles, if you like...' I say.
'I think we should go and set up the camera,' says Pinhead 1 to Pinhead 2. 'We don't want to miss anything.'
'...Or balls of light?' I say.
'Let's just finish the drinks first- it's cold out there,' says Pinhead 2 to Pinhead 1.
So, I am not wanted. I am just a talking duvet. Grandpa Jack comes into the tent on his knees, beard first. He wafts whisky fumes over the crew. Now I know why his stinky pipe is so useful.
'I've read the alien signs - they'll be back later,' he puffs and flops over, shoving me against the side of the tent. 'I've met Buzz Aldrin, you know!' he says.
Yeah, I have heard that one before, I think.
The director raises his head above his neckline. 'How very interesting,' he says and he really is. 'And do you think Buzz believes in alien life?'
'Oh, I should think so,' says Grandpa Jack, settling into remaining free space. 'When you've been in space, there is no end to what you can believe. '
What does Grandpa Jack know how Buzz Aldrin feels? I shuffle out of my duvet. I am heating up with annoyance.
The Pinheads are nodding inside their coats, their eyes all fascinated. 'Have you actually been in space Dr Marshall?'
Doctor? Doctor Marshall? In space? I look at Grandpa Jack and he grasps my shoulder very hard.
'Agh!' I say.
'Space is nothing to me,' says Grandpa. 'Any spare hot chocolate?
'I'm going home,' I say to anyone who is listening but nobody is. I worm my way to the flaps and come face to face with Dexter. His mouth is a bit droopy.
'Oh it's you,' I say. 'You can't come in - there's no room.'
'I don't want to come in,' says Dexter, 'but my dad does and there's some other bloke as well...'
He is shoved aside by his Dad. 'Hi! I'm Dave Dooney, alien-kidnap-boy's father and I am prepared to give you exclusive televisual rights to an interview with me...'
Pinhead 1 tries to get to his feet and then remembers where he is and sort of scrunches to his knees. 'I think we should talk Mr Dooney - would you like some hot chocolate?'
'I'd like some hot chocolate,' says Dexter.
Dave Dooney waves him away. 'Go home, son - we don't need you.'
Dexter looks at me and shrugs. I understand exactly how he feels. I shrug back and give him a friendly arm punch. We wriggle out of the tent and into the dark of the flattened field. Miranda's Dad, Chas is lying face down on the ground. Miranda holds a torch for him. She waves. Chas jumps up and runs to the tent.
'Out of my way, boys,' he cries, 'I need WORDS.'
He bobs down and leaves his bottom sticking out of the tent doorway while he shouts inside. 'I think you should know that this field is about to be declared a site of special scientific interest. I have discovered an interesting little nest of wasp spider and it is being DESTROYED by these so called alien landings...'
'What d'you mean so-called...' Dexter smirks as he hears his Dad shouting back.
'Let me in!' bellows Chas. 'It's this sort of hysterical moronic behaviour that endangers the entire planet! I think...'
We don't get to hear what he thinks because his bottom and legs disappear in a rush through the doorway. The tent starts rocking and bulging out all over the place. There are shouts and oofs.
'That is pathetic,' says Miranda. 'They always think they're right.'
'Adults,' I sigh.
'They take over,' says Dexter and we all nod in agreement.
'Do you want to come and see the stick insects?' asks Miranda. 'There are millions of them now.'
I look at Dexter.
'Could do,' says Dexter. We glance at the tent. It seems almost alive, most of its pegs are flying about and it is listing dangerously.
'I think they're going to be busy for a while,' I say.
We set off out onto the little lane. A bright orange light appears above our heads. It flashes and pulses. Gradually it takes the shape of a long tube. We stop and wait. My mouth is open and I cannot stop the dribble coming out. A little door slide opens on the underside. A large yellow head with a funny green beak pops out.
'Bit lost,' says the alien creature. 'Can you tell us the way to London? Got some leaders to eat, I mean meet. Baa-aak!'
I raise a trembling hand and point somewhere or other. Just my luck, we get to meet the aliens and they turn out to be giant chickens.
HAPPY CHRISTMAS! SEE YOU IN THE NEW YEAR!