By PAT JONES
THISis the twentyfifth Christmas Number of the "New" CATHOLIC HERALD. Twenty-five years ago the Christmas tide woman's column confined itself strictly to recipes, a great many of them in fact, and printed at great length.
The column during the rest of the year confined itself mainly to matters of conking, or dress, and I shall treasure the advice given by "Cora" to apply rouge to the end of the nose to shorten it (not, we hope, to make it shrink).
The Christmas column is headed "Stuffing for the Bird" and is accompanied by a picture of a large turkey, duly plucked, with its toes turned up and pointing skyward in an attitude of complete defeat.
MISS CATHOLIC HERM D of 1934 was, if we can believe the photographs, not averse to stepping out in a dress of tweed and taffeta, an unheard of mixture today.
There were frequent lxiges on handicrafts, a paper pattern ser vice, and a child psychology series —in fact all the items which are now fully covered by the women's magazines. There were items on marriage and the family, on employment and unemployment, which were not written specifically for women.
rp H E unemployment ▪ problem loomed large. Five years unemployment for some of the Catholic youth was not considered unusual by some of their neighbours, who had known worse. Their day was described by a reporter. "Morning —a few dull hours at home. Then down to the street corner, with talk of racing and football, or into the public library to lose himself in an exciting novel. Night might find him with a few coppers for some cheap dance or cinema. Grey days and dull nights, with nothing left in life but to kill time."
THERE were short • stories, with fragile,
large eyed heroines gazing up at strong browed, clean cut heroes— each pointing a firm moral.
G.K.C. (with a portrait of him almost spreading out of the column to which it was allotted) stating his views with vigour on the Need for Simplicity, or Back to the Land. these headings being no doubt the work of the editors.
Chesterton was complaining about the people who decided they would like to live in the country, go there, and promptly cover it with advertisement hoardings and petrol stations, destroying the rural life they themselves want.
I wonder what he would think of England now.
FEW families, in this age of plastic, can now plead poverty for not having a crib, however diminutive. On my desk is a crib, not more than 7 in. high, and topped by a shooting star.
The eye is drawn by one pink and one blue angel, to the group below, complete with shepherds, kings and animals, all in miniature.
"Wouldn't it be nice if it was a baby girl—they look so sweet in Shirley Teniple curls and dresses." The prospective grandmama who reminisced in this fashion obviously hadn't heard of Eloise, the little girl of six who possesses no share of beauty, but makes up for if with a terrible zest for living. "Eloise at Christmas Time" is a book about a child for grown-ups, with life in an enormous hotel as the background. Drawings (lots of them) by 11. Knight, and verses and conversation by K. Thompson. (Rheinhardt, 12s. 6d.) It costs 3s. lid. plus 9d. postage from the Aggra Trading Co. Ltd., 63 Bridgewater Road, Wembley, Middx.
A PRACTICAL gift for
" a very practical friend would be a subscription to "Which?", the monthly magazine which reports on consumer goods.
Forthcoming reports include tests on cosmetics, TV sets, vacuum cleaners, washing machines, electric light bulbs, carpets, nylon stockings (I can hardly wait for that one) and other items specifically requested by shoppers.
The recipient is sent a Christmas card with the donor's greetings, together with the December issue. The cost is Li, the organisers the Consumers' Association, 333 High Holborn, London, W.C.I.
..and pounds THE' other magazine in the same field though covering different goods, is "Shopper's Guide". A subscription will cost IN., and between the two of them, they will probably save the consumers pounds.
The address of "Shopper's Guide" is the Consumer Advisory Council, Orchard House, Orchard Street, W.I.
WHILE we are on the subject of subscriptions as Christmas gifts, don't forget the delightful, fascinating, ever-readable CATHOLIC HERALD, a bargain at 26s, for a year to any place you care to mention.
A large. imposing Christmas card is also sent with your greetings (and ours!) to the lucky recipient. The address is 67 Fleet Street, London, E.C.4.