Stuffed birds and hot years (Merry Christmas)

The fourth LP I bought (after Sgt Pepper and The Monkees first two albums — this was 1967/8, and I’d just acquired a record player that could handle discs larger than singles) was a Stax sampler called This Is Soul. It triggered a life-long love of that Memphis soul sound, and in particular the voice of Otis Redding. His version of White Christmas is a thing of joy. Play it today, and think not of the fact that this year is likely to set new records for hottest year on many of the global temperature series.

Nick Cave’s take on Christmas is (characteristically) a little gloomier than most, and perhaps more appropriate.

Things down here are fragmented

In fact they’ve exploded all over the room

I think everything’s a little off-center, babe

I do dear, I do

So, dear reader, allow me (and all the contributors to Hot Topic) to wish you the very merriest of whatever season it may be that you are currently celebrating. In the Waipara Valley it looks like it’s going to be a long hot day. A turkey is truffled and soon to be cooked, there is too much good wine to drink1, and Rosie the beagle is looking forward to a break in her post-harvest diet. Nadolig llawen.

PS: If confronted by a climate-denying family member over the holidays, here’s some advice on how to approach them, from The Conversation via the NZ Herald.

  1. Considering the supplies laid in for the next week, and my intention to have a dry January, my liver is going to take a hammering. Do not expect much in the way of posts here. []

7 thoughts on “Stuffed birds and hot years (Merry Christmas)”

  1. Wishing you all the very best this Christmas. Out of our lounge and dinning room windows the Firth is shimmering in the sun. It’s going to be a hot and pleasant evening. The sustainable red at lunch (cooked by yours truly) was delicious, the Christmas cake (baked by mio) moreish, and the the best present – safe drinking water for 25 people.

    1. And a very happy Christmas to you and yours. The day’s cooling off here, but it was warm rather than hot – a good thing. Tomorrow the son and heir has determined that I have to play a round of golf with him. This will be the third (or fourth) round in my life, and promises to be an interesting experience.

      Send more balls…

      1. On the 14th October 4 years ago I was running back to the hall after thursday night scottish country dance club to retrieve something I had left behind when I fell in the middle of the main road after coming to grief with the substandard civil engineering and ditches which are the local council’s excuse for guttering. The resultant smashed left shoulder necessitated surgery. As I was discussing the out come with the surgeon I enquired would I be able to use my golfing woods?
        “I can’t guarantee” he replied “But I don’t see why not”
        Oh that’s good” I said “because I’ve never been able to before!”

        Enjoy your round tomorrow. We are off to climb in the Karangahake before it is all gone courtesy of Newmont 🙁

  2. Thanks Gareth, for you information and inspiration. Hot Topic strikes a pleasing balance between the personal and the factual. Realclimate and Skeptical Science have the science all right, but are more formidable for the non-scientifically trained. Keeping the issues real and down home is the hallmark of your site. I tell my arty friends, AGW is, in essence, quite simple to understand – go have a look at Hot Topic… Ah, but the collective deafness has grown very dense!
    All the best to everybody for the New Year.

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