That’s not the coolest opening sentence I’ve ever written. It’s a song that I loved, then hated with a passion and it now sits in limbo beyond like and dislike. What it does contain is all my childhood Christmas memories.

I don’t know how many years this covers for they all blend, but they all had the same characteristics; a sense of warm, a feel of home and my dad; really pissed.

Every year we did the same thing, we never went anywhere and my grandfather always stuck a rosette to his forehead. I divide these childhood memories into two: pre- and post-Spectrum. The pre-Spectrum period was mostly characterised by Lego. Upton Park? Built it. The bridge of the Starship Enterprise? Took a while, but looked bloody great (reminds self to upload photos). You had to be careful in my childhood bedroom, one misplaced step and whole communities were displaced.

By the Spectrum era, I was less social. In pub quizzes my knowledge of early 80’s television is hopeless. Solely because I was sat upstairs trying to finish Atic Atac. Or Avalon. Or those bloody Level 9 text adventures. I could still hear that Jonah Lewie song parping away downstairs.

I don’t know when Christmas changed from being a childhood treat into something a little less full of surprises. As a child on Christmas Eve, I could never sleep with so many stomach butterflies. Nowadays, I normally pass out on the way home from the pub.

I jumped out to get a sandwich this lunchtime and heard Stop the Cavalry for the first time this year. The silly words, the horse neighing, that irritating horn. It still takes me back, though. Even in Benjys in Romford, on a Thursday lunchtime. Surrounded by chavs.