Twas The Night Before Christmas…

Traditionally read on Christmas Eve, naturally, at least in our family. I can still recite large stretches of this from memory, purely from childhood repetition! This is the complete text of Clement Clark Moore’s famous poem, on one sheet. This is a project that’s been knocking around in the back of my head for number of years, and this holiday season I finally did something about it.

'Twas The Night Before Christmas

Also available on PDF, if you wish to print it for reading by the fire with care. (UPDATED 5th December 2012; I rearranged part of the website a while back and forgot to fix this link. Sorry. It works now!)

CC-BY License, although it doesn’t currently say so on the page. Done in Inkscape, naturally.

Happy Mid-Winter Holidays, everyone, however you celebrate them.


Tim Minchin Can So Do Mellow…

A surprisingly nice Christmas song from Australian genius Tim Minchin:

He does get a few classic Minchin digs in (“the lyrics are dodgy” is a personal favourite) but it’s mostly a very nice song about family, holidays and such. The real meaning of the upcoming Solstice holiday, in whatever version most of us celebrate it, in other words.

Quite a change from my first introduction to Minchin, which was the F-bomb-laced, glorious and awesome “Pope Song”…

Anyone offended by the Pope Song hasn’t actually listened to the lyrics.


Seasonal(ish) Links

Tis the season, and all that…

The Big Picture started their 2009 Hubble Space Telescope Advent Calendar back on December 1st. (I’m of the opinion that the Hubble Space Telescope is the greatest public art project ever undertaken. The science is a bonus.)

The HP Lovecraft Historical Society does excellent mock-carols on Cthulhuish themes. Here’s a Youtube vid of Death To The World.

Bartender/blogger Jeffrey Morgenthaler has a excellent eggnog recipe. Easy, quick and yummy. Suggestion: cut the amount of sugar in the recipe in half; it’s still plenty sweet enough done that way. I’ll be doing this at a couple of Xmas parties in the next few weeks, as I did last year, and I’m sure it’ll be a hit all over again.

Oh, and December 25th is also Newtonmas (birthday of Isaac Newton), amongst other things.

Last year’s post on approximately the same theme.


Obligatory Holiday Post

Quick post and a couple of fun seasonal links before I finish my second eggnog and do that “long winter’s nap” thing this Christmas Eve.

The always-spectacular Big Picture has a 25-image Hubble Space Telescope Advent Calendar which was completed today with one of my favourite images of all time – the Hubble Deep Field photo, in which all but a half dozen of those little points of light is an entire galaxy.

In similar vein, the NASA Astronomy Picture of the Day sight has the Apollo 8 Earthrise photo from 1968. The Deep Field image shows a slice of the entire universe; the Earthrise image was our first proper glimpse of our small blue piece of the galaxy.

Sick of the same dozen Christmas tunes in stores and on the radio over, and over, and over, and over again? Isn’t everyone? SomaFM has a pair of streaming Christmas channels up; the Christmas Lounge stream has a great mix, including different versions of all those classics the malls and commercial radio inflict on us.

Merry Cthulhumas, Happy Newtonmas, Satisfactory Festivus, Merry Christmas, etc etc. I hope you get good food, interesting presents (and gave interesting ones), excellent drinks (I’m planning homemade eggnog…), and interesting companions (please remember that strangling relatives is not permitted, even at Christmas).