Christmas At The Ministry


‘Humphrey: I wonder if I might crave your momentary indulgence in order to discharge a by-no-means disagreeable obligation which has, over the years, become more or less established practice within government circles as we approach the terminal period of the calendar year, of course, not financial. In fact, not to put too fine a point on it, Week Fifty-One and submit to you, with all appropriate deference, for your consideration at a convenient juncture, a sincere and sanguine expectation – indeed confidence, indeed one might go so far as to say hope – that the aforementioned period may be, at the end of the day, when all relevant factors have been taken into consideration, susceptible of being deemed to be such as to merit a final verdict of having been by no means unsatisfactory in its overall outcome and, in the final analysis, to give grounds for being judged, on mature reflection, to have been conducive to generating a degree of gratification which will be seen in retrospect to have been significantly higher than the general average.

Hacker: What’s he talking about?

Bernard: Well minister, I think Sir Humphrey wanted to crave your momentary indulgence in order to discharge a by-no-means disagreeable obligation…

Hacker: Alright, alright Bernard. Humphrey…

Humphrey: At the end of the day, when all things…

Hacker: Humphrey…

Humphrey: Minister?

Hacker: Are you saying Happy Christmas?

Humphrey: Yes minister.’

– Jay. A., Lynn. J. (December 27, 1982) Christmas At The Ministry as part of “The Funny Side Of Christmas” on BBC 1