Christmas is a horror show if you’re a cyclist. The weather’s lousy, there’s barely any daylight, people constantly pester you with mince pies, and the roads are dangerous with drivers daft on Bailey’s Irish Cream. This was the opinion offered up to me by one of my more curmudgeonly pals recently. As you might have guessed, he’s a real glass-half-empty type of chap, a man for whom none of the season’s charm holds any magic. Now, I’ll readily admit to being neither a religious man nor one easily swayed by the kind of Disneyfied sentimentality that often gets served up at this time of year, but I flippin’ love Christmas. And not just because the extended break actually makes it a great time of year for cyclists (in fact check out our features on pages 44 and 50 to see how it can be used to maximise your bike-based fun). Nope, I love it because it strikes me that it’s the one time of year when just about everyone stops worrying about work for a bit, takes a breather and briefly comes to the same conclusion: that we are all here – to quote the great Kurt Vonnegut – to help each other get through this thing, whatever it is. So whether you spend the holidays on your bike bashing out the miles, or on your sofa giddy on eggnog watching It’s A Wonderful Life, may I wish each and every one of you – including my curmudgeonly pal, should he be reading – a very merry Christmas. Enjoy!