The (Revised) New Year Honours List
Whilst the rest of the world slowly awakens to 2014 a gathering storm looks likely to break out in the United Kingdom over the recent annual New Years Honours List. Were you passed over again? Or were you deliberately ignored? Perhaps you were just forgotten in the mad scramble by the authorities to make sure all the current and most watchable celebrities were awarded for being ... err ... the current and most watchable celebrities this year!
Indeed, every year our Sovereign bestows honours on selected members of the population and every year someone somewhere complains that they were missed or someone was wrongly credited with an honour. You see, the New Years Honours List could only ever be British. It's one of those quintessential bizarre events that we British hold every year - every New Year to be precise.
In days of yore sword-wielding warriors were made Knight of the Realm for their courage and bravery in the service of the Crown. Now a Knighthood can be awarded for being popular, good attendance, and doing your job properly. Actually, we've just moved on from the mkiddle ages to recognise a whole raft of celebrities, sports people, politicians, public servants, and volunteers who are the backbone of British Society. And it is a truly wonderous affair that takes pride of place at this time of the year. There really must be a story to be told when a top sports personality rubs shoulders with an aging volunteer who has spent a huge majority of their life raising cash for a worthwhile charity.
Yet who did they miss out this year? Yep, you guessed it right.
During the Germanic Christianization of Europe this man rose to prominence. He's a legend now having been later derived from the Dutch figure - Sinterklaas - Of course, we know him as Santa Claus, Saint Nicholas, Father Christmas, Kris Kringle or quite simply Santa. There are many who doubt his existence but believers know that he brings gifts to the homes of good children every Christmas Eve. It's only a week before the New Year Honours List. You can hardly forget him when it's that close can you?
And what of the Easter Bunny?
It is said that this character is also fantasy - Ridiculous, say I - he also originated from the German Lutherans and famously decides on which children have been good and which children have been naughty. The Easter Bunny, as we all know, delivers Easter eggs to good children the night before Easter. (I always get chocolate ones, actually,and I hide them in case I have to share!).
So there's two missing from the list - The third? Why the Sandman of course.
Another alleged mythical character from the history of central and northern European folklore who brings good dreams to children by sprinkling magical sand onto their eyes while they sleep at night.
Now, if I've got it right, that leaves only the Tooth Fairy. You do believe in the Tooth Fairy, don't you? Put simply when a child looses a baby tooth they place it under the pillow at night and fall asleep. Once they are asleep the Tooth Fairy comes along, removes the tooth, and replaces it with a silver coin.
So you can see how contentious the New Year Honours List is and why it is often debated. Oh yes, only in Britain do we have such quintessential annual events that dominate the headlines for a week or more. But next year... oh next year, please get it right and don't forget Santa, the Easter Bunny, the Sandman and the Tooth Fairy. They've all been around long enough, done their job well, and are famous enough to be honoured in the List - surely.....?
Finally, let it be said however strange our customs are - Congratulations to those who have been honoured. Follow this link for the full list courtesy of the BBC... A taste of Britain..... Only from Britain.....