Warning: This article may contain traces of nuts.
I’m speaking to you from the flat above Downing Street where, as you know, I’m self-isolating because of the dreadful Plague that has come upon us. Of course it would be tempting to relax, to take our foot off the brake, to ease up on the gas, to take our eye off the ball, especially at this time of the year. But we will not do this, as we cannot be too careful or too vigilant in this fight against this dreadful Plague. As one of my predecessors said in what was a remarkably similar national struggle:
“We shall never surrender, but shall go on until the end. We shall fight the virus in the schools, we shall fight it in the pubs and restaurants, in the garden centres, the leisure centres, the churches, the essential and non-essential shops, and of course in our homes.”
But I know that your thoughts are now naturally turning to the festive season, and you’ll be wondering if it will be safe to spend this Yuletide together with loved ones. Unfortunately — and it really does break my heart to say so — despite all our best efforts to enable you to have the normal Christmas you all want, it’s just not going to be possible while the Plague is still not under control. However, the good news is that if we all buckle up and knuckle down, making the sacrifices we need to make this year, there really is every hope that we can all get back to celebrating Christmas with our loved ones, perhaps next year or sometime after that. Even now, Hark, I fancy I can hear the clarion call of the Christmas cavalry calling from over the horizon of December 2025. But we’re not there yet.
However, I do want to be clear. What we’re not doing is cancelling Christmas altogether. That would be an outrageous abuse of power and I know that you — the freedom loving people of this great country — would simply not accept any attempt to stifle liberty. Actually, what we’re really doing is saving Christmas for you; giving you the merriest little Covid-Secure Christmas you can possibly have under the circumstances.
Based on the recommendations of our Three Wise Men, Professors Vallance, Whitty and Ferguson, we’ll be operating a Festive Covid Tier System, and to make it easier for everyone to remember, we’re basing it on the gifts we remember from all those years ago in our school nativity plays: Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh.
For those in Tier Gold, you will be able to have as normal a Christmas as possible … except for all the rules that already apply, and of course the additional regulations we’re going to need to introduce, which I will set out in a moment.
For those in Tier Frankincense, along with the national restrictions, there will be a ban on the singing of Christmas Carols and Songs, particularly “We wish you a merry Christmas”, which has a lot of “shus” and “sehs” in it, which could cause viral particles to travel further. You must also not sing beyond the 6th day of the 12 Days of Christmas, as any mention of gatherings of more than six, be it swans, maids, drummers or pipers could encourage people to break the rules on social distancing.
For those in Tier Myrrh, unfortunately you are going to have to defer all Christmas celebrations indefinitely, but we do hope you may be able to get back to a normal Christmas before the decade is out, or perhaps sooner if we are able to roll out our new Digital Christmas Covid Passport.