Being anthropomorphically predisposed, the story I am about to tell is painful for me, but one I feel I should share. Several years ago our friend, Mr Flange, gave Mrs Custard and I seceral small gifts in exchange for us making him some dinner. Amongst the fine presents he brought was a small peluche Christmas-themed penguin who 'sang' Jingle Bells when you pressed his tummy. Here's a picture of him. As you can see if you look closely, Mr Flange even bestowed a name on our furry singing chum; he charmingly called him 'Twatbollocks.'
Young master Twatbollocks has been part of our Christmas decorations ever since. He goes well with the hundred or so other pieces of penguin-related paraphenalia we have received from people over the years, the result of a penguin fixation I'm yet to fully shake off. The only problem with Twatbollocks is that he doesn't shut the fuck up. Singing Jingle Bells in December is fairly acceptable, but when the yuletide season reaches an end and young TB is popped back in the box with the tinsel, baubels and all the other penguins, he is prone to leaping into song at the slightest knock of his cardboard home. The result was that anytime we went rummaging in our hallway cupboard we could hear faint muffled verses about dashing through snow in one-horse open sleighs - something which, I might add, I doubt Mr Twatbollocks has ever actually done.
What with the recent move, the christmas decoration box has had a fair few knocks of late and yet Twatbollocks has been spookily silent. It was only last weekend when we got around to unpacking everything again that we noticed something was wrong - very wrong, with our little penguin chum. Instead of his jovial jingling bells-related jangle there was only a sickening static buzz, like the sound of someone being electrocuted after dropping a radio in the bath. What's worse, rather than clicking off after a minute, Twatbollocks just kept going, spitting out static like a drunk foul-mouthed robot tramp. Even when hidden in the depths of the spare room cupboard we could still hear his crazy-dalek babble. Eventually Mrs Custard could take no more; 'he'll have to go....'
I've been emotionally scarred before from saying goodbye to members of our furry menagerie. I'm still haunted by the memory of saying adieu to Bunny Warehouse, a fluffy white and pink rabbit we were given by Mrs Custard's uncle. We eventually put her in the Vinnie's donation bin - mostly because she was scaring us and the other toys (some of whom had unkindly taken to calling her Bunny Whorehouse). I can still remember her accusing eyes as I gave her once last shove in the face after her head got stuck in the swinging door. With this in mind I left it to Mrs Custard to send Twatbollocks on his way to his final destination... the dustbin.
So that's my story. I'm sorry if you found it upsetting, but life is sometimes cruel. I'm not proud that we got rid of Twatbollocks, but it was necessary. Tuneless, unseasonal singing is all well and good, but even my Aunty who gets inappropriately drunk at family parties knows when it's time to leave. I hope that wherever he is he understands, and takes solace that there is now a corner of the internets forever dedicated to his memory. And wherever you are on the planet, if you should hear the jolly strains of Jingle Bells over the coming weeks, please stop, take a second and think, 'here's to you Twatbollocks...'