Yes that is a lump of coal you see! It's traditional in Scotland to go first footing on Hogmany (New Year's eve) and tradition has it that you bring a lump of coal to put on the fire, some whiskey and that you be male, dark and handsome! Of course it's difficult to meet all that criteria so often the coal is dismissed and folks bring the whiskey to put a glow in their cheeks instead...that makes everyone feel Bonnie!
So raise your glasses for a wee toast
(A good New Year to one and all And many may you see)