Dear Noel, you know the tradition where each side of the family takes it in turns to host Christmas Day? Well, for some reason my dumb husband has messed it up and invited his family to our place when it isn’t our turn! There’s still time before Christmas but I feel bad changing the arrangements so late. Can you help?
Signed, Screwed over Sally
You’ve landed in quite a Christmas pickle here. I agree with you – you can’t un-invite your guests. They’ll just talk behind your back about what a manipulative, annoying cow you are and you don’t deserve to take that flack when it’s not your mistake.
Don’t take it out on your extended family. It’s not their fault and most of them will have no idea what is going on and will simply be merrily pointed in the direction of food and alcohol like innocent yuletide sheep. Your objective is to ensure the normal order of hosting can be restored. The strategy to achieve this is to re-assign the roles on Christmas Day to guarantee your husband doesn’t stuff-up like this again.
Don’t get mad. Get even on the feast of Stephen.
Simplest way to do this is to reverse the responsibilities for the food menu and your husband will experience a Christmas Day like never before.
Make it a BBQ meal plus some ultra fancy salads. The switch is, you do the BBQ and delegate everything else to your knucklehead man to organise.
The BBQ will act as your anchor right throughout the stormy sea of Christmas Day. As your husband floats past you in a blur of disorganised chaos trying to accommodate random requests from your annoying extended family, you’ll stay secure, latched with the responsibility of piloting the cooked meat ship we call a BBQ.
Don’t make it easy for your guy either. You don’t want him pulling together a bit of tomato and lettuce. Insist he use the following ingredients in his salads, as a minimum.
Kale, Quinoa, Edamame, Fennal, Galangal, Acai and Bacon (Just kidding ignore the bacon). And beans; Pinto, Azuki, Anasazi, Snake.
If he complains, blame everything on your extended family. The aim is to keep him chopping, grating, zesting and pureéing for hours while you do the easy stuff.
Now here are some tips to own the BBQ on Christmas Day and ensure you really give your husband the shits.
- Drink at least a dozen of your favourite beverages while you’re cooking.
- When your hubby or any other male walks past skull your drink as quickly as possible and demand they grab you another on their way through. Glance seriously at the BBQ and wipe your brow as you do this to suggest the connection between you and the grill can’t be broken.
- All day, pretend you don’t hear anything out of the side of your head that faces the kitchen where food is being prepared. Nothing at all. If you see someone’s hair catch on fire out of the corner of your eye, stay calm and don’t respond. Make it someone else’s problem.
- Invite some of your female family members into a circle around the BBQ and chuckle every 1-2 minutes, between mumbling of obscenities just below your breath. Escalate the laughs to a crescendo where it wakes all the old people and babies up.
- Make sure everyone sees you with the biggest pair of tongs you can find. Tongs generate an unexplainable aura of authority and power. Hold onto them for the entire day. Even if you need to go to the bathroom, take then with you (not inside of course) but so people can see you’re attachment to the BBQ hasn’t been broken. They are your life raft.
This will work on a number of fronts. You’ll be marvelled at for cooking such an amazing BBQ meal you really only had to flip a couple of times.
Cook twice as much as you need. This will ensure that as the dish is plonked on the table it will dominate. Move everything else out of the way of your meat meal. Try and sit the meat on top of all the salads. Have your BBQ circle of friends make excitable sounds and grunts as you place it down.
It doesn’t matter if there are people present who don’t eat meat; it’s your hubby’s responsibility to take care of all their needs. This is all about making an entrance and pissing your bloke off.
And don’t stop there. There is at least another hour or so you can stay attached to the BBQ under the pretence of cleaning it whilst everyone else does the real washing up. You don’t actually have to do anything, just pretend to. Don’t think your hubby cleans the BBQ anyway. If you don’t believe me go out right now and take a look under the hood. And don’t be alarmed at what you find, enough heat will kill anything.
Follow this and your guy will never again mess your Christmas Day up. Normal order will be restored. And you won’t have to host again for at least another two years. Enjoy.