Comedy //

How to spend Christmas alone

Peter Walsh spent Christmas on his own so you don’t have to.

The author sits at a table, alone, holding a Christmas cracker and looking sadly towards the empty chair beside him.


  • 1 x Turkey Breast, skin on.
  • 2 x Kipfler Potatoes.
  • ¼ cup milk.
  • 50 grams butter.
  • Salt and Pepper.


1. Wearing an apron or t-shirt you can wipe your hands on, remove the turkey breast from its wrapping and suspend over a microwave safe bowl.
2. Rinse, peel, and quarter your potatoes, placing them in a microwave safe bowl full of water. Cover in plastic wrap.
3. Place both bowls in the microwave and cook on HIGH for 17 minutes. Don’t worry about the two bowls cross-contaminating. The flavours compliment one another and it’s kind of beautiful to see two things coming together despite all their differences and commitment issues.
4. After 10 minutes, remove the potatoes, allowing them to stand and cool for 5 minutes. Potatoes taste better when you give them some time alone.
5. In a third microwave safe bowl, combine milk, butter, salt, pepper, and place them alongside the turkey in the microwave for 3 minutes.
6. Once warmed through, remove the mixture and combine with the potatoes, mashing in a large bowl with your fists until it stops hurting.
7. Remove the turkey from the microwave and rest it on the bench, allowing the juices to redistribute the way you imagine yours might if only you could find someone to share them with.
8. On a plate, arrange the—wait…
9. The turkey’s undercooked, with skin shriveled like the points of your elbows. Cut in and it’s pink with dark red threads running through like heartstrings (though what would you know about those?). Whatever you do, hold it together.
10. In your first microwave safe bowl, heat the now-cut-up turkey on HIGH, using the sensor function since you obviously can’t calculate how long to cook a piece of meat.
∞. This, like everything else, is entirely your fault.
11. You didn’t use enough potatoes, so the milk mixture has drowned them. Decant the mixture into the third microwave safe bowl and heat the excess liquid out.
12. Distract from the catastrophe circling the microwave by cycling through every message you’ve sent that was SEEN but not answered.
13. Do a round of the living room and confirm your photographs are all lying face down, especially the ones with—
14. What’s that smell? Oh no.
15. Arrange your cinder of turkey on your desiccated potato* and notice it looks like a coffin floating on the shittiest cloud. Use a bowl wide brimmed enough to avoid spills in your bed.
16. Warming your thighs with your laptop, lie down, eat, and wonder whether twelve months is enough time to learn how to use the oven.

*To clarify, the potato looks positively sebaceous, with little holes where the moisture was sucked out, like an adolescent moon that abuses facial scrub.