It’s that time of year again--you know, the time for “paying bills without money,” for “finding yourself a year older, but not an hour richer,” and, of course, for re-reading A Christmas Carol. But wait: we all know (or think we know) A Christmas Carol. What about Dickens’s other Christmas stories? I’ve actually never read them, and I’d like to. I thought I’d start with “The Chimes,” which is short and appears, promisingly, to involve goblins. It’s easily available in electronic editions (here and here, for instance); some contextual information and the illustrations are available here. At The Valve, I've proposed a miniature version of the Adam Bede project we did in the summer. I’ll post a reminder there in a week or so, and then somewhere around December 19 or 20, post a few comments and/or questions and see who comes to the party. If you think the story will go down easier with a little “Smoking Bishop,” here’s the recipe. Everyone's invited; bring a friend! Or post on your own blog and we'll make a decorative blog-link chain.