Christmas crackers, or bon bons, are a must on our table at Christmas time. They originated in 1847 and were the invention of an English confectioner and took off from there.
I love the pop of the cracker, the silly plastic toy or trinket, the lame joke and, of course, the colourful paper hat. When I was a kid, we always laughed at my dad, whose hat never fit and always tore significantly up one side. When we moved up to Queensland, in the heat the hat would stick to his bald head and deteriorate spectacularly during the course of the meal, causing him to be the butt of our jokes once again.
I love seeing what the toy inside is. One year, I decided to spend more than $5 on a pack of ten crackers and we had some half decent things inside. Like a mini calculator, a small pack of cards and a bottle opener that became known as ‘the lucky hippo’. He was named for the fact that he was in the shape of a hippo and proved to bring luck to the holder during family games for the whole season. He even ended up in the pool at one stage and went a bit rusty. I don’t think he was quite so lucky after that.
Some people call the whole of December, the silly season. And I agree, Christmas is silly sometimes, yet it’s one of the things I love about it. When else can you pull a cardboard tube until you hear the pop and then tell jokes that don’t even make sense whilst wearing ridiculous paper hats?
There doesn’t have to be a higher meaning to everything. Sometimes being silly is just simply fun and that’s all there is to it.
What silly thing do you enjoy about Christmas?