The lovely people at RT have asked me to write about my fantasy Christmas dinner. Surely Christmas dinner is quite a fantasy already? Try describing it to an alien or small child. “It’s like a Sunday dinner, but better and with more food... I know. You’re right. It is awesome. Consider this: there’s MEAT wrapped in other MEAT and that’s not even the main MEAT! And, aside from the food, there’s a small-scale strongest-man contest where the winner gets a plastic ring and a crown that tears very easily. Yes, I bet you will win that... Our leader’s televised message? Is that the Queen or the Prime Minister? Oh good, it’s Clare Balding!”


And presumably, as it’s a fantasy Christmas dinner:

1. I can be ten years old so that my only responsibility is folding the serviettes into poorly swans.

2. My granda can be there. (He died when I was 16, but the Christmasses with him were some of the best I’ll ever have.)

3. I win all of the crackers and they’re the old, cheap ones with false fingertips and moustaches inside, not the posh ones with tiny pointless salt and pepper sets and miniature nail clippers.

4. I have 19 cats and they all want to sit on my knee. I cry because I’m so loved (needy).

5. Everyone leaves promptly. It’d be awful to have to hoover around celebrities to get them out.

Along with my fella, mam, dad, sister and late granda, I’ll have eight guests – not seven, as Len Goodman is on the list and those who love him try to avoid that number. He needs to save his sevens for work. My kitchen table isn’t big enough, so some will have to eat on trays in the living room and I might have to put one in the car.

I reckon Dave Allen and my granda will get on and it’ll give my dad a chance to tell the story of how Mr Allen once bought him a whiskey. It’s a good story. Len Goodman can twirl my mam around the living room while my sister and I queue up for the next dance. Stephen Fry and Richard Osman will do well against my fella in the quiz. Sample question: Name a newsreader. No, it was Moira Stuart. My money’s on my fella.

You get bonus guests of Terry Wogan and Ronnie Corbett when inviting Rob Brydon, though we’ll let him be himself for a few minutes too. Miranda will be in charge of carrying the plates and the jug of gravy (no boats her, a proper jug). I’ll get the mop ready. And the Carrs (Jimmy and Alan) will keep us entertained, which is a good job as no one will want to watch themselves on telly so we’ll miss all the best shows!

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And they’ll all leave promptly in the early evening after Richard has loaded the dishwasher, Jimmy has taken out the rubbish and Miranda has performed her trademark breast clap. Please no one ask Len what time it is.

Merry Christmas, you lovely lot!


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