Five Christmas guests who are worse than your Least Favourite Relative
Christmas is a family time, where we happily bond with those closest to us — as 5million TV ads are currently reminding us.
But there's one aspect of Christmas family time that ad-makers seem to gloss over: the Least Favourite Relative (LFR). The LFR comes in many guises: a brother who mentions his eye-watering salary 11 times an hour; the cousin who shares your pasty, sun-starved face on Instagram every 30 seconds; or, the classic, inappropriately cuddly old uncle. And, as we all know, according to Goodwill's Rules of Christmas, you are contractually obliged to welcome your LFR exactly as if you mean it. Sigh.
So, to help you see the silver lining, as you're sitting down to turkey with your LFR this year, we want you to think how much worse things could be... And to help you visualise that, we present five Christmas guests considerably worse than yours.
1. Dan Tran
Yes, you may suffer when your LFR launches into an unfunny funny story. Yes, you may sit there with a rictus grin, praying for it to end. But ask yourself, what would it be like to have Dan Tran at your table? Poor old Dan shot to fame as one of the greatest anti-raconteurs of his generation. Try to get through the clip without wincing.
2. Typhoid Mary
In the early part of the twentieth century, Mary Mallon was responsible for infecting at least 51 people - and possibly considerably more - with typhoid. Mary worked as a cook and moved from one employer to another, infecting them as she went. Her extraordinarily poor hygiene and refusal to believe she was carrying the disease made her all the more dangerous.
If invited to your house, she would insist on helping with the sprouts, and that would be that.
3. Father Noel Furlong
We know how exhausted you all are when that Christmas guest leaves. So imagine, with gratitude, how much worse it would be if you were entertaining Father Noel Furlong for the afternoon. And if you think that this hyper-manic, ultra-annoying character only exists within Father Ted, think again. Just watch the Graham Norton show. It's not an act.
4. Dorothy Parker
Was that a little bitchy about national treasure, Graham Norton? It may have been because we were thinking about our next guest, Dorothy Parker. Parker was an American poet, writer and critic, who achieved fame for her caustic wit. Undoubtedly, she would be terrifically entertaining, but chances are that before the telly went on, someone would have fallen prey to her withering wit. This is how she dealt with a snooty young debutante:
The two women left the building at the same time. At the doorway, the debutante announced, “Age before beauty, Miss Parker.” Dorothy swept through, answering, “Pearls before swine.”
At least with your LFR, you might occasionally be able to sneak in a witticism at their expense. Whereas Dorothy would annihilate you.
5. Lucrezia Borgia
If Dorothy would metaphorically stab you in the back, our next guest might do it literally. Or more likely, do you in using the poison-filled hollow ring she was reputed to have used. Lucrezia was the most notorious member of the most notorious family in Renaissance Italy. Although she now tends to be cast as a pawn more than a power-broker, there's little doubt that people around her had the unfortunate tendency to drop dead.
Plus she'd insist on wearing that dress.
So what's the moral of the story...?
Well, there isn't one. We just wanted to show that Dan Tran clip to be honest. However, if we have to dig deep, I suppose it's just a reminder to be thankful for those around you this festive period. And if you ever want to meet someone as dangerous, scary and annoying as those mentioned, we can always introduce you to our accountant.
Have a great break and see you in the new year.