Category Archives: humour

The Chocolate Nativity

chocolate christmas hershey kissesThere have been a few tellings of the nativity story, using chocolate, around recently. This is the one I’m using on Christmas Eve, adapted from some found online, in particular from one I was passed by Grange Park Church from last year, and from Alistair Cutting and David Keen‘s blogs. The text has been adapted to fit the chocolate that I could find. (Couldn’t find a Topic anywhere!). The idea of using it is to help people stay tuned in to the story, as it can be quite easy to phase out on hearing familiar words again.


It’s a familiar story; It has little to do with reindeer pulling sleighs and flakes of snow. I don’t want to fudge the issue, so I’ll begin the story of the first Christmas.

Once upon a time, some 2000 years ago, a young girl called Mary, heard a wispa from the angel Gabriel that she was to be the mother of God’s son. But how could this be?

By order of the government, Joseph had to return to the town where he was born, Bethlehem, which was many miles away. Being pregnant and unmarried in that culture was a terrible thing, so Joseph took Mary with him: it would surely do them good to have a break (kitkat)

There were no busses then, especially no Double Deckers. Mary and Joseph had hardly a dime (Daim!) to their names, so they had to walk most of the way.

It was a long journey, for a young girl, so heavily pregnant, and the ground was very rocky.

When they arrived, Joseph desperately tried to find a place to stay. There was no room in any of the inns or hotels, and even the clubs were full.

Eventually they were offered the chance to stay in the outhouse of a local pub. The stable! And so it was there in the inn that the baby was born. They didn’t have a cot to put him in. But they had to make to with an animals feeding trough, a manger. They laid him on the straw, which was very crunchie.

The baby was named Jesus, which means “saviour”.

That night some shepherds tending their flocks saw a bright light in the sky. Shepherds have a tough job, and they needed a Boost.

Some angels appeared, in the sky, singing. But they weren’t singing any classic tunes, this one was a new song:

“Glory to God in the highest heaven and peace on earth”. The Shepherds said, “come on let’s go to Bethlehem and see what has happened there”.

When they arrived, they found  Joseph, Mary and the baby who was laid in a manger – it was smelly and dirty, not really a fit place for king.

“isn’t he a poppetThey thought to themselves

They were filled with wonder, Could this be the one the had prophets foretold? It was getting late, after eight in fact, so the shepherds returned to the hills.

Meanwhile, in a far country, some astrologers (they were real smarties) were busily scanning the galaxy, looking at the star(bar)s. Suddenly they saw a bright star near the milky way. Was it mars? No, it was a star shining with extraordinary brilliance, way out to the east. They realized that the star signaled the birth of a new King in Bethlehem.

There were no aero-planes in those days, so the wise men climbed on their caramels (camels) and set off on their long journey.

They arrived at the place where Jesus was, worshipped him, and presented gifts from their bounty. Gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.

This child is the true king. The Son of God – so he is Divine. To use an old testament phrase, he’s The Lion of Judah. He is God incarnate.

He came to bring God to each one of us, and lets face it, we could do with a refresher, couldn’t we!

Jesus is certainly worth having a celebration for!



The power of ‘lol’, *wow* and ‘hun’.

Five minute friday again. OK, so I haven’t actually posted anything since last-five-minute-friday, but that’s beside the point.


Being a regular on facebook, twitter and of course to blogging, it hasn’t escaped my notice that a number of new expressions are sneaking their way into English parlance through these mediums.

  • lol = most commonly ‘laugh out loud’ (or occasionally ‘lots of love’)
  • *wow* = to express amazement
  • hun = short for honey, expresses sympathy, support, or close friendship

Not being a great fan of such shortenings, at first I thought it was just people being lazy and not bothering to express what they wanted to say in proper English, but I think there may be more to it than that. In particular I remember being surprised at how many people responded to a heartfelt facebook statuses with the rather inane sounding “oh it’ll be alright, hun”.

The thing about written medium of any sort – books, articles, emails, text messages or social media – is that communication doesn’t carry the tone in which something is said. It is sometimes quite difficult, for example, to ask something directly and quickly without it being read as blunt. Often most dangerous is when you are trying to communicate humour but it is not read in that way. The interpretation is affected by all sorts of things, not least what the reader is feeling at that very moment, or what they might think about the writer. I have been caught out a few times on this. This is where lol, wow and hun can be helpful. They help to tell the reader what tone something is said in. The use of ‘lol’ indicates that the comment is clearly meant to convey humour or sarcasm. ‘Hun’ expresses sympathy.

Perhaps I was too hasty to discard such grammatical shortenings, as they evidently have a place in communication. Anything that helps us convey what we want to communicate more effectively has to be useful.

Alright, hun, that’s all for now.


6 minutes.

Generation A in his own words

Our book group is discussing Douglas Coupland’s Generation A tonight (which I have reviewed). I just found this question and answer session about it. Some weird questions but he does give us an insight into how his brain works and what was behind the book. Some of what he says about story remind me of what Donald Miller wrote in ‘A million miles in a thousand years‘ about our lives needing to be story. Perhaps this is what Coupland thinks we have lost.

Simon Cowell on TV talent shows

Great quote from Simon Cowell about the importance of shows like X Factor and Britain’s Got Talent:

“The great thing about it is when you start seeing it in places like China and Afghanistan. It’s democracy. We’ve kinda given democracy back to the world.”

via BBC NEWS | Scotland | Edinburgh, East and Fife | Oprah show subtitles Susan Boyle.

I didn’t realise talent shows were going to save the world