And Alex Said: 2003

10 January 2003

Column 10: 2003, 10th January 2003

It’s that time of year – the beginning of it – when people make all sorts of stupid new year’s resolutions. It’s a new dawn, a new beginning, a time to reflect upon ourselves, and all because the earth has completed another revolution of the sun from some arbitrary point, which means we’ve changed the digit we put at the end of the sequence of numbers we use to distinguish the days from each other.

New year’s resolutions are great for those of us who decide to do something about our character faults during the autumn. I took a look in the mirror and realised what a fat, sarcastic, lazy bastard I was – but why start to correct all of that on the 15th of November? No, continue depositing that blubber, putting off work and pissing off people for another six weeks, and then it’s all change on the 1st of January. Yes sir!

So, this year I made a few resolutions: Eat less, go to the gym, do more studying, get up before 2pm, drink less, stop wasting money, read more, watch TV less, consider a career, think of more original subjects to write columns about, change my underpants.

Oh, and turn myself into somebody as happy as Barney the dinosaur and as loveable as Handy Andy is to a group of silly old grannies. However, I really did not want to end up like Graham Norton, and anyway, changing your personality is difficult. It’s hard not to be a miserable bastard in London, surely – it’s such a grumpy city.

Whether you’re paying a fiver for 330ml of Foster’s, sitting in your dingy bedroom while your landlord is charging you eighty quid a week for the privilege, or just sprinting across the road to avoid being mowed down by some nutter in a Mercedes, it’s hard to raise a smile, whatever you’re doing.

Even if, by some chance, I was as cheery as Postman Pat, how could I spread the joy? Of course, you can’t look at anybody on the Tube – they might be some kind of psychopath. They’ll roll up their copy of Metro, insert it into one of my orifices and then set fire to me. Look at the soaring crime figures – I’m scared to even talk to old ladies on the bus, because they’ll put me in a headlock, rape me and jump off at the next stop with my wallet.

It’s not like this anywhere else. In Newcastle the beer flows freely, everybody grins constantly and they’re always inviting fellow bus passengers to parties. But in London, I think I’ll stay as I am, thanks – nice and miserable.

It looks like my “New Year, New Alex Warren” mission failed. Not only have I failed to be full of happiness, but when I wasn’t a thin, healthy, spotlessly clean workaholic on New Year’s Day, I thought it would be silly to begin on January the 2nd, so I’ve put it all off until 2004. It will be a whole new me.