(Dartmouth and Jollimore are sitting in a room decked out to the brim with Christmas tinsel, a Christmas tree with fairy lights and baubles of different hues, flashing neon ‘Merry Christmas’ signs and Santa Claus dolls of varying sizes. Christmas songs play in the background.)

Dartmouth: (takes in a deep breath and sighs) Man, oh man. Christmas. The most stressful time of the year.

Jollimore: (cheerfully) The most wonderful time of the year!

Dartmouth: Many people say that. But really, it’s stressful.

Jollimore: It’s Christmas. What more could you say? Presents under the Christmas tree, colourful decorations, turkey with stuffing, Christmas pudding, fun in the snow… It really is the most wonderful time of the year, as the song goes!

Dartmouth: Not for some people. Christmas is the most expensive and stressful time of the year for them. Including me.

Jollimore: Well, I can understand that. Some gifts aren’t cheap. Like those fancy phones, tablets or video game consoles all the kids want nowadays.

Dartmouth: And it’s even more expensive if you have several kids or friends who want those gifts too. Just thinking about the prices is bringing a headache on to me.

Jollimore: (smiling) But still, it feels good to give! That’s what Christmas is all about, after all – it’s the season of giving!

Dartmouth: Well, I certainly do give… those stupid kids a good whacking when they get up to their little tricks!

Jollimore: (grinning) Gonna get coals in their stockings, are they, Dartmouth? Naughty kids get coals instead of presents for Christmas.

Dartmouth: Oh, they certainly will be. They’re always on Santa’s naughty list, so every Christmas will be full of coal for them!

Jollimore: That’s actually kinda sad. Those kids look forward to Christmas all year for their presents underneath the tree. And all they get are little black rocks.

Dartmouth: At least those coals have a useful purpose – keeping them warm throughout the winter, unlike all those fancy-prancy gadgets they’re so addicted to!

Jollimore: But they want something fun for their presents. They ARE kids, after all.

Dartmouth: Yes, but what about us adults? We’re too old for all that “magic” and “sparkles” malarkey! We’re more hardened and realistic!

Jollimore: I think you’re forgetting something, Dartmouth…

Dartmouth: Eh, you’re just a fluke, Jollimore. But I’m much more mature than you. I don’t have to deal with all that “positive thinking” New Age malarkey you practise. And Christmas is just another ordinary day for me.

Jollimore: Oh, Christmas certainly isn’t just another ordinary day. It’s a magical day!

Dartmouth: It’s a stressful day for me, and that’s that.

Jollimore: (to the audience) Ah, he can never catch a break… even at the holiday season.

A very Merry Christmas to all of you!