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A bit late, as always.

Oh, look at that! Since I was last here a whole year has whizzed by. Golly gosh.

I always find the idea of a New Years Eve rather odd, that one day could be one year and the next day another. I always count my birthday as the start of the new year, because...well that’s when I begin living another year. I feel New Years Eve is just a thinly veiled reason to get absolutely pissed. Not that anyone seems to mind.


I’d recap what I’ve been up to since last time but I can’t remember most of it. Christmas and New Year is always a fairly large and obnoxious event for my family; party after party punctuated by bouts of sitting in front of the tele mindlessly eating leftovers. I love every minute of it.


Alas, the holidays are over for me now, which means my time is split between not-blogging, work and trying to correct my sleeping patterns. (No, Helen! You go to sleep at night and wake up in the day! Not the other way round!)


In amongst all that, who has time for New Years resolutions? I mean, seriously. You wake up on New Years Day, presumably with the largest hangover you’re likely to get until next New Years Day and you are supposed to start changing the habits of a lifetime? Whose stupid idea was that? The first day of the new year feels too Daunting and Scary. Presumably because it’s New and New things are to be feared.


I know this and yet, every year I try. Every bloody year.


I’ve tried every single approach in the book. See:


1. “Only pick one, realistic aim.” – This just meant instead of failing numerous aims I failed the one. The fact I thought it was realistic depressed me further and made my defeat all the more pathetic.


2. “Plan ahead!” – When I failed I just lamented all the stupid months I’d wasted planning the failure.

3. “Tell your friends, they can help you!” – This annoyed them. They were as sick to death of my resolutions as I was.

4. “Reward your good behaviour.” – I feel I perhaps rewarded myself a bit too much.

5. “Motivate yourself! Leave encouraging notes around the house.” – I did this to the letter, leaving chirpy and helpful notes all around. This made me hate the chirpy and helpful version of myself with a passion.


6. “Track your progress.” – This at least meant I had a nice visual representation of my failure at the end of it all.

So, this year I’m trying to simplify it. I’m putting my actions into two little categories – GOOD and BAD.


For instance, it is BAD to read the death notices in local paper only to laugh at the poems people have written. It is GOOD to help old ladies cross the street.


See? It’s simple. Only, so far I’ve laughed at a grand total of two poems in the death notices and the invention of traffic lights has kind of meant old ladies don’t require my help at all. In fact, if I did offer to help they’d probably think I was stealing their purse or something and I’m certain that scaring old ladies would go under the BAD column.


Then my good friend (I shall call him H) pointed out to me that resolutions should be about improving your happiness and health and not your life in general. So, me laughing at people is BAD, but it makes me laugh, which makes me happy, which is GOOD. I mean, I’m going to hell, but people should live for today, right?


So there you go, my conclusion: be happy. It’s really very simple. Why hasn't anyone thought of this before?

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The thing about failing friendships is that, unlike romantic relationships, you can’t simply break up. One of you can’t just stand up and say “I don’t think we should see each other any more,” - or at least you can, but you don’t. Friendships, instead, sadly fizzle out with a series of embarrassing encounters and failed conversations. You only smile a little when passing now and you don’t go out with them anymore and then you stay in that limbo for a long while until you realise that, this birthday, they didn’t buy you anything.


Frankly, it’s more draining than any break up I’ve ever experienced, because for the most part you don’t know quite where you stand. You think, well should I say hi? Should I invite them out? Should I buy them a birthday present this year? Often, you don’t want to be the one to make all the effort and look desperate, but ultimately you don’t want to be the one to cut all ties either. It’s a complicated dance, and it’s a bloody annoying one.


It’s rather typical, I think, of British culture – not quite saying what you mean, unwritten rules of etiquette. I don’t normally fall into these traps and tend to pride myself (a little too much, perhaps) on speaking my mind, and yet I fall for this again and again.

 

Problem is, being all about manners, it misses the mark. Because surely, just not sending seasons greetings one year is pretty rude? I’m fairly certain that blanking someone you see in the street is not considered the proper thing to do. And yet, this is where this whole thing leaves you. Mind you, the hope in breaking up a romantic relationship without argument is that one day you will be friends, and I don’t suppose that’s would be what you’d hope to achieve by breaking up...with a friend? Where would one go after that? What would you hope to achieve? A clearer conscience? No wonder no one bothers.

My sister dodges this particular nastiness by stubbornly keeping in touch with everyone, always. This has its advantages, because then if anyone ever drops her from their inner circle, she isn’t offended – why would she be when she has so many other great friends? It’s clever, but most of us don’t have the stomach for that much social interaction.


But then again, maybe I misjudged it. Maybe it saves you the hassle of things turning nasty. I suppose I did make this blog to feed positive thinking, so let’s get positive (and a little bit sickly sweet) shall we?


Here we go then. The way I’m choosing to look at it is this: it’s probable that one day your bestest friend in the whole wide world will just be a crossed out name on a Christmas list, so you should make every single minute with them brilliant. Let things go once in a while, laugh and hug and then at least when you see that crossed out name on your Christmas list, you’ll smile at the memories.


And one day I imagine I will just sit someone down and say that it isn’t them, but me. I suppose we’d have a good laugh about it. One day, eh?

Are you sitting comfortably?

Hello. I am not at all interesting.

You are forgiven for thinking I might be, seeing as most people who write about themselves tend to be incredibly interesting or lead interesting lives or at least occasionally do the odd interesting thing on a whim, but no. Really. I am not interesting

 

Tuesday marks the day I have officially lived a whole eighteen uninteresting years. For most people living in England, that would mean drinking, partying and an all round night of debauchery. For me, it means a full day of college followed by a quiet night in with the family and some Victoria Sponge.

 

Nevertheless, for some odd reason I still feel the need to start a blog today because it’s on my list of things to do before I’m thirty and, like, eighteen is, like, only twelve years away from thirty, omg.

 

Also, recently my life has been all about ch-ch-changes and I sort of feel I need to commemorate them. Even the small ones – like a radical haircut – and the bad ones – like the breakdown of longstanding relationships. Up until now, I’ve shied away from change, but if everything else in my life can shift and transform, why can’t my view of change itself? If I can manage that, maybe next time all those inevitable life changes come along they won’t knock me off my feet.

 

So I think this is what this blog is going to be. This blog is going to be about me getting back on my feet and running about like a mad person in an attempt to make the next eighteen years of my life something to write about. Feel free to join me.


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