December 2014 Update
Do they know it's Christmas time? I don't know how they possibly could, seeing I'm not doing my Authentic German Christmas Do this year. It'll be back next year – I promise. And as the saying goes: Vorfreude ist die schoenste Freude. And a full 12 months of it!
Luckily there's no shortage of German Christmas this-and-that all over Blighty. I had the pleasure of being in Birmingham on the opening night of their massive German Christmas market. And I have to say it's amazing how many of my countrymen are fluent in Romanian these days.
Other than overindulging on mulled wine and punch-ups down the Tesco, Christmas is all about emotional blackmail.
A lady who kindly bought tickets for one of my shows in May now can't make it, but the venue's terms and conditions don't allow a refund. Instead of giving them to friends (the ideal Christmas present) she sent me an email saying if I don't personally reimburse her, then I ruined her Christmas.
Obviously I don't mind being charitable. Only last Sunday did I appear at a benefit gig for a migrants' rights organisation. Bizarrely the audience were exclusively white – the only non-whites in the building were fellow unpaid performers and minimum-wage bar staff, making sure the pureblood establishment had an enjoyable evening. In hindsight I should have kept that observation to myself rather than use it as my opening gambit.
You live and learn. Like the bloke in Strood who, in the spirit of Christmas, draped his house in red and white – but didn't pay enough attention to what order he assembled the colours in and ended up in the middle of a political storm.
It's ridiculous how he was portrayed as a typical example of the white working class. Travelling up and down the country on tour let me assure you: houses covered in England flags are a rarer sight than openly gay footballers/openly heterosexual hairdressers/openly positive coverage of a European Union initiative in British media.
Even the BBC is totally biased. Reading last week's coverage of the Invest in Europe initiative you could have thought the EU had unveiled a plan saying: "We're trying to raise 30bn to hand out willy nilly."
Thinking that, no matter what you make of the EU, this can't be the whole story I checked on Sueddeutsche Zeitung and it transpired it's a programme to level interest rate disparity between European countries by underwriting private sector investments in economically weaker areas.
Admittedly this makes for far less entertaining reading than "They're building a gravy train from Strasbourg to Brussels for technocrats. And Britain's got to provide the gravy. No more roasts for several years!" but it would stop people risking their lives by climbing up ladders, trying to cover their houses in flags.
This is my preaching done for the year - have a great end to 2014 and hopefully see you next year
Please find below a list of upcoming gigs. It would be great to see you at one of those. Tickets for all shows on www.henningwehn.de - before booking please check for previous engagements that day.
And once you're on www.henningwehn.de you might as well quickly buy Henning Knows Bestest. It's available as DVD or Download. Because nothing says "Merry Christmas" quite like some data stream.