Last year, I broke the habit of a lifetime and was away on holiday, abroad no less, for New Year’s Eve, an evening usually spent privately yielding to idleness and chocolate. This year, I break another habit of a lifetime and am away, abroad again, for Christmas, a period usually spent in the kitchen anaesthetising anxieties about the capacity of the freezer and/or oven with white wine.

More broadly, ‘the season’ has me indulging my appetite for filthy, funny, festive, foolishness, and most years I am driven to sharing my research as to where such delights may be found with readers of a similar bent. This is one of those years.

Of course, one can find funny filth throughout the year if one looks for it, but there is something gratifyingly mischievous about seeing something wickedly naughty made from something wholesomely nice, and adult panto scratches that itch brilliantly.

Although sign-posting comic seasonal smut is the founding principle of the article, I also collect throughout the year Christmas gift ideas.

It goes without saying that some find their way onto my own gift wish-list; in the festive spirit I share them with you in case it is useful for the theatre lovers in your life, or for you to mark up with a highlighter and leave lying around as a hint to others if needed.

As always, this article comes out later than I first planned so some last minute, guaranteed ‘e-delivery in time for Christmas’ gifts have to be included and I suggest some music, which is a largely downloadable activity these days for all but the strictest lovers of vinyl, and some books, many of which are available in various e-formats, as well as the more traditional paper editions.

Online gift ordering and delivering knows no geographical boundaries, but live performances do and inevitably the show lists, with which I start, are skewed towards the capital because that is my living, working and theatre-going stamping ground.

As a result, by some margin, most show information I receive is for productions in and around London. This year, the list is further limited by a technical glitch, or perhaps jealous Grinch resident in my software, which has resulted in the loss of a stack of press releases.

In summary, the lists, which are never intended to be conclusive, are this year a little more random. Any omission is not to be taken as saying that there are no Dicks in Doddington or Pussies in Boot, just that news of them has failed to reach me.

And so, the time has come—if you want to know what Jack does with his stalk read on …