AUTHOR: James Dowen

Christmas Despatches

As I addressed the nation, at the Star Christmas Party, I mentioned and
thanked those, who had travelled a long way to be with us. I ignorantly
failed to mention Tom Channel 4, who had come a very long way indeed, from a
place called Manchester. I am now taking the opportunity to formally thank
Mr Channel 4.

It is now traditional, that Charlotte Loans is harrassed by a member of Star
Racing Ltd, when attending any type of work function. It was the turn, at
this party, of Mr J Croxford, to step up to the mantle. As I informed all
in my speech, Charlotte informed me, privately, at a recent function, that
she doesn’t fancy ANYONE at work. I was also quite persistent when putting
her under this questioning. Mr J Croxford was unable to break this deadlock
placed, by Charlotte, on those employed by any, and all, of the Star

Will Stock-Broker came along, to allow us the benefit of his delicate and
considered, but very entertaining humour. He was tactically placed on my
table by Pam Statements, as he had previously stated he doesn’t eat
desserts. Pam arranged for me to be able to help him in this hour of need
and I was thus furnished with, not only a delicious apple and raspberry
crumble, but also a christmas pudding and custard. Thank you, Pam. Both

Lukey Tarr made a very humorous post dinner speech regaling the most
humourous moments of the year at Star. One of his chosen incidents was
recounting my fury during the Black Caviar race at Royal Ascot. As you know
Blog, I have little or no interest in horse-racing unless the favourite is
about to lose, and this race proved no exception. At Royal Ascot, I time my
visits to the betting ring, so I won’t miss any of the food being laid out
in the box. On arrival, back upstairs, as they started the big race, the
desserts had been brought out. I examined them, only to find that the
afternoon’s offering was a coconut cheese-cake. ‘A coconut
cheese-cake??!!’, I hear you WRETCH!!! YES, Blog!!! Well, I was,
obviously, straight out onto the balcony, to confront Luke, regarding this
terrible error of menu choice he had imposed on myself and our guests. I
pulled him inside and gave him a good dressing down! He then threw a
hissy-fit and told me I was disturbing the best race of the year. What a
primadonna!! I said I didn’t care if I was disturbing Red Rum’s comeback
race – coconut is disgusting!! He then informed me that this moment in time
was even bigger than that hypothetical event, in racing terms. Anyway, as
far as I’m concerned, if anything coconut is ordered in the box again, I’ll
be disturbing peoples wedding nights and wives giving birth!!!

On safe arrival back at the Grand Hotel, it has been brought to my
attention, that several members of the staff organised for some extra temp
type staff of their own, to come and put a couple of hours of work in.
Afterwards, they resumed the party, back downstairs in the bar, and their
temporary lady friends, too, I am told, joined in with the festive
celebrations. Apparently, the Star Army were doing an impromptu
‘hokey-kokey’ dance, and one of the afore-mentioned ladies was next in line,
and joined up to, Pam Statements’ mum! Unbelievable scenes Jeff!!!

Back with the Elderly and Infirm; a couple of days after the Christmas
Party, the Male Dept. thought he’d chuck in some of his antics. In the
middle of the night, it came to him, that it would make things easier during
the holiday period, and for the E & I’s impending cruise of the Canaries, if
he chose to fall over and broke his pelvis. So he did so.

Everyone then had the, not mild, aggravation of trapesing backwards and
forwards to the Sussex County and then the Princess Royal, to continually
visit the Male Dept. Armed to the teeth, with copies of The Times, and an
endless supply of reading material, to keep him entertained.

My mum deserves a round of applause though. On Christmas Eve, it was clear
to all that the old man was not going to be emerging for the big day. So,
without any prompting, my mum left a stocking stuffed with presents, with
Father Christmas, to be left at the end of my dad’s bed on Christmas
Morning. Mum, well played there, a lovely touch.

I have escaped to Tenerife to enjoy some sun, and no doubt, as usual when
having a holiday, I expect I will also catch a sore-throat, in due course.

Blog, I shall keep you posted on my hol and any other sore-throat-type
developments. I can feel one coming.

Over and out, Ben x