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2006 Xmas

Richard Fair wrote on BBC Radio Manchester Blog about his annoyance at sites that are permanently under construction and also at bloggers, who take a Christmas break. I’m jumping up and down with joy because it’s my first year on the blog, and so I created this new label, 2006 Xmas, where I’ll be gathering and/or narrating some Xmas and New Year related stories. Obviously, I cannot collect them all, consequently, the choice is purely random.

Now, for years they have been observing the British monarchy becoming *modern*, and today it looks like the institution (or at least those who represent it) has become almost totally advanced, at least as far as the use of technology is concerned. This year Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II is going to podcast her Christmas address, which was recorded at the Southwark Cathedral. The article states that

a Yuletide institution, the 10-minute broadcast is televised on December 25 at 3:00 pm (1500 GMT) in Britain, as many families are recovering from their traditional turkey lunch.

The opportunity to download the podcast will mean two things. First, you can recover from your lunch without feeling guilty that you cannot properly tune in to what your governor has got to tell you. [It’s best not to watch TV or to read newspapers while eating, anyway]. Secondly, you can enjoy Her Majesty’s address whenever and wherever you want, and for as many times as you may wish. I think this is even better than a one-off chance to see and to listen to your monarch.

I didn’t hear President Putin considering a podcast of his New Year address. The Russian New Year address happens shortly before midnight 1 January (Moscow time). Most people celebrate the New Year at home or with friends, but some go out to the Red Square and other open places. Wherever they decide to celebrate the New Year, they gather solemnly with the glasses of champagne to listen to the address. The address is followed by the traditional striking of the clock on Spasskaya Tower at the Kremlin, during which you make your New Year resolutions. After the last (12th) strike of the clock the New Year has officially started, and so you drink your champagne and carry on watching your entertainment TV.

There is one thing some people do whilst listening to the clock striking. They write their resolutions on a piece of paper, immediately burn it, mix the ash with champagne, and drink it. I know it sounds weird, but this is considered to be the way to make your wishes come true. I never did it – because I’m pathetic at using a lighter. Every other time I’m using it, I end up burning the tip of my thumb’s nail. So I just repeat my resolutions to myself.

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