ZELLA COMPTON: Dear Santa '“ I'm dreaming of a white goods Christmas

About 10 years ago we ended up buying all new electrical appliances. Everything we had was second or third-hand and so run down. So we invested in our future. And wouldn't you know? Ten years later, everything is again falling apart at the same time.

Tuesday, 19th December 2017, 8:00 pm
Why does everything break down at once?

A plague of epic power-fail proportions is spreading through the house.

First to go was the power in the shower. The pump which has been an endless source of steaming hot water has given up its purpose and we’re now left with a hotel-style dribble of water to use.

It shows how ridiculous our DIY capabilities are. We’ve convinced ourselves we can jump-start the pump by, for example, flushing the toilet straight after turning the shower on, or holding the shower head down at the bottom of the tray. As if. Nothing has worked, it’s time to admit defeat.

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It’s one of those things to add to the fix-after-Christmas list. Like my grey hair, at nearly a £100 a pop, that’s a fix after Christmas (and as an aside, my hairdresser texted me to remind me that my next hair ‘service’ was due. Yep, she’s got that right, service is the exact word for what needs doing to my barnet).

Also on my fix-after-Christmas list is going to the dentist. Oh woe for the days of free NHS dental care, but ironically, back then I never needed any work anyway.

So the power shower joins the fix-after list. As does the vacuum cleaner with its split connecting tubes, handily duct-taped back together. I’m secretly pleased about this appliance biting the dust. I’ve never liked emptying it out and while there is something eminently satisfying about watching dirt swirl within its cylinder there’s something equally – nay more – revolting about having to tip it all out again and getting covered in dust. I would wash my dusty clothes, but guess what?

The washing machine’s been teasing me with a slow death for about three weeks. Even with my TLC care of not using it for at least five hours between washes, it’s finally popped off its mechanical coil, after blowing the electrics in the house every time it was switched on. I should have seen that as a clue and got my act together back in November when there was still a vague hope of spare money.

Now I’m looking at my fix-after list and wondering whether I’ll get everything done in time for next Christmas. Finding a pot of money, that’s now number one on the fix-after-Christmas list.


There I was, browsing the internet and up pops an advert telling me that Raquel Welch is now 77, and is unrecognisable today.

This statement was displayed under a picture of her, in all her extraordinary beauty, but from decades ago.

It made me wonder who would genuinely click on that bait, as obviously – like all men and women – Raquel Welch has aged.

How recognisable should one be exactly as the decades pass? And who is the judge of that? These questions have left me pondering the nature of the open internet and whether a paywall would be of benefit.

Getting rid of moronic adverts has an undeniably appealing edge, but I suspect that’s not the paywall purpose.


Tis the season to be jolly and to have the annual discussions about whether Love Actually is a great rom-com or simply gross.

It is hard to watch one young man go off to America and be swarmed over by a bevvy of young ladies because of his accent, and another young man stalk his best friend’s wife and make completely creepy gestures to her outside her flat, and... well, the list goes on.

But then it has lovely moments too, mainly between men, but they’re there.

To watch it you either have to open a massive bottle of Baileys and drink through the pain, or point out every smarmy detail and annoy those that love it, whichever side you’re on.

Merry Christmas.