Last full week before Christmas, we expect your bank account's feeling the strain. All that Christmas shopping and partying taking its toll? If you want to make the most of being out and about before Christmas cabin fever and complete exhaustion set in then we're here to help.
Keep the braincells going through silly season. Go to the free lecture at Gresham College
about why our society rewards celebrities, fads and fashions and why. Professor Michael Mainell starts at 6pm and there's a drinks reception after (free booze!). Or, go braindead and join the singalong at Selfridges
, led by Mel B.
Tuesday: Catch the London Gay Men's Chorus singing in Covent Garden's West Piazza at 6.30, 7.30 and 9.00pm. Or, if you're out Docklands way, gather in Canary Wharf's Eastwintergarden for a Carols and Candles community service from 5.30pm. The Thomas Tallis Chamber Choir will carry the tunes and there will be the obligatory mulled wine and mince pies to keep you going.
Perhaps purposefully avoiding the words 'carol service' St Paul's Cathedral has its free and unticketed Celebration of Christmas
at 6.30pm featuring the Cathedral Choir, City of London Sinfonia and celebrity readers. A great opportunity to see the Cathedral in action at a jolly nice time of year (and not have to pay the entrance fee). Thursday:
London Gay Men's Chorus are at it again, in Covent Garden at 5.30, 7.00 and 8.30pm. Cadge another glass of wine and a luxury mince pie at Blackwells Bookshop, Charing Cross Road where Andy Riley
, the man behind the Bunny Suicides
will be signing and sketching in his books to a live classical guitar soundtrack. Friday: 90 Free Christmas
at 93 Feet East offers a tablespoon of Christmas spirit, 100g of Hannukah and the joy of every other race and religion to celebrate good music and boomtastic DJs away from the trash of corporate Central London. Also: BBQ in the courtyard. Wicked. Saturday:
Cold enough for you? You don't know you're born. Get yourself down Brockwell Lido
and jump in. Yes. Outside, in your swimwear, on Midwinter Day. The pool manager says that once you've acclimatised, swimming in cold water induces an immense sense of well being. Glad you're alive, we assume. Turn up between 11am and 2pm. Entry to the Lido is free with a £1 donation invited for Age Concern. Hot drinks and mince pies will be available for recovery time. Get home and snuggle up in front of the telly for the glittery final of Strictly Come Dancing from 5.50pm.Sunday:
Your final chance to catch the London Gay Men's Chorus while you finish your Christmas shopping, this time at Selfridges, Oxford Street at 12.30, 2.00, 3.30 and 5pm. And if you fancy some singing yourself on the way home, pop into the nearly restored St Martins in the Fields
for a traditional service with congregational carols from 5.30pm. Or if Christmas Christianity doesn't float your boat, skip out of town to Theatre Royal Stratford East
for free comedy with Patrick Monaghan
compering a mix of stand up, variety and game show style entertainment at 8pm. Or, you could stay in and marvel at Londonist's pretty new features and perfect your lovely reader's profile.
Photo from Jason Rogers' flickr stream.
With many thanks to the London Freelist. Check the websites for more information.