Holly berries, little ruby bursts. Robin redbreasts frozen to branches. The White Witch abroad. It may be more of a case of in the dreich midwinter, rather than let it snow, let it snow, let it snow in Scotland at the moment, but nothing can dim the Festive good cheer on the For A' That podcast.
With the apocalypse averted, the year ended, and vast quantities of brandy-laced stodge in prospect, our guests this week embraced the seasonal spirit by casting a suitably leery eye over the last twelve months in politics and the independence debate. On this edition, Michael and I were joined by a couple of characters from rather different ends of the Scottish political spectrum for the last podcast of 2012.
Coming up the left flank, we have Robin McAlpine, director of the Jimmy Reid Foundation and editor of the Scottish Left Review. Drifting rightward on the political spectrum, our second quest was Alex Massie, who blogs over at the Spectator. How has the independence campaign been shaping up? How are Yes Scotland and Better Together getting on this last year? And for larks, Michael went spelunking among the cuttings to find the most eccentric - or simply batty stories - published over the last year about that perilous future state, an independent Scotland. A provocation to God? An incipient outpost for the international Caliphate? Or a threat to the masculine spirit of the fighting Scotsman, bereft of decent wars to fight in? Your guess is as good as ours.
We'll be back with more discussion in the new year. Until then, you can listen to the show directly here, or download it, either via your iTunes, or the podcast's home page. You can also find the whole back run of 2012's nine episodes here, to catch up with any you missed first time around.
Otherwise, it only remains to say, my very best Christmassy salutations to everyone who has leant this blog and the new podcast their time over the last twelve months, and commented, emailed and donated. Both enterprises remain grand fun to do. I hope you've found them diverting and engaging. Have a spiffing Christmas one and all, I hope Santa is good to you, and most essential of all, live tomorrow by this simple rule: don't overcook your bird, and do enjoy a fortifying beaker or two. Shalom!