Wednesday, 31 December 2008

Seconds Out :: Year Two

Someone said to me the other day, ‘How on earth are you going to follow 2008?’

‘Oh, I don’t know, 2009?’ I replied, hilariously.

‘No, but blog-wise,’ they insisted, wilfully unamused, ‘what are you going to do? You’ve found a woman, you’ve got a book deal, you lost most of the weight you were trying to lose. You stopped smoking. Mostly. It’s like, what’s left to do? What’s left to blog about? And the answer has to be – as far as I can see: nothing. What’s the point? There’s no point.’

I pooh-poohed the pointlessness. After all, most of what I blogged in 2008 was just ordinary stuff that happened to me: relationships I was having, things I was getting up to, stories from the past. And despite the fact that I won’t be speed dating or whoring myself online in ’09 – fingers crossed – I’ll still be getting up to stuff. I’ll still be having ridiculous conversations with idiots. I’ll still be doing and saying idiotic things myself. So I don’t think things round here will change so radically. Not really.

But still, something worrisome lingered like a foul smell. Maybe it was all that pooh-poohing, maybe it was the fact that in 2008, there’s no denying that this blog did have a hook. An angle. Something that made it a bit special, and gave me a raison d’etre. In 2009 however – unless I come up with something a bit special – it’ll just be another run-of-the-mill blog, and I’ll just be another navel-gazing cyber-diarist, regurgitating an unspectacular existence like a shouty old man in a train station with stuff in his beard.

So, what I’ll have to do – obviously – is come up with something a bit special.

Hmmm. That may take some time.

In the meantime, here are my general intentions, in the traditional, timely manner.

New Year’s Resolutions :: 2009

1. First and foremost I resolve to write the best book I can possibly write. It has to be good enough so that anyone looking forward to reading it is not disappointed. It also has to be good enough to afford me the possibility of writing another one. In fact, ideally, it’ll spawn a career which takes in novels and screenplays and this time in 2010, I’ll be poolside in Malibu, sipping margaritas with Charlie Kaufman and Audrey Tautou. It’ll be purely platonic between Audrey and me however, despite her best efforts and leechlike attentions.

2. Secondly, I resolve to ensure that this blog remains readable. The last thing I want to do is become one of those bloggers who get lucky and then turn their back on their blog. I’d rather jack it in altogether than let it fester and ossify, and I have no intention of doing that.

3. Thirdly, I resolve to purchase or otherwise procure for myself a kitten. I recently saw some pictures of Bengal kittens and I resolved to have one of those.

But then I thought, no. They’re too pretty. I would get one, fall in love with the little thing and then some evil swine would take it away, torture and skin it. You know what human beings are like. And I would never recover. So I resolve instead to get an ordinary moggy. This makes more sense. I’m more of a moggy man really.

4. Fourthly, I resolve to grow my own vegetables and make the healthiest soup known to man. The garden is a bald mess at the moment so the transformation I intend to visit upon it will probably make for some exciting blog posts too. No, really.

5. Fifthly, I resolve to love well and with ecstasy aforethought. (This should maybe have been further up the list.) (Oops.)

6. Sixthly, I resolve to learn a foreign language. Maybe French. Maybe Mandarin Chinese. (Probably French.)

7. Finally, I resolve to carry on in my attempts to become healthy. This means eating well, attending a new gym regularly and generally doing as much as possible to compensate for my increasingly sedentary lifestyle. Ideally I’d like to get down to around twelve or twelve and a half stone by the end of this year.

Then I’d be happy.

But as it is, I’m pretty happy anyway, and I can’t wait to get going on all of the above just as soon as I’m back from Bonnie Scotland.

So all that remains to be said is a gargantuan thank you for reading this year, all of you, even the evil stalker. It’s been a fantastic year and it genuinely would have been nothing without all of the feedback I've received from all of you. And I hope you all have a fantastic 2009.

See you next week.


Feel free to leave your own resolutions in the comments. I’d love to hear them.

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Melissa said...

Do I have first comment? Perhaps that's because everyone else is still thinking about what their resolutions are. Mine's simple: to never make any new years resolutions...

I still reckon you'll achieve most if not all of the things on your list. It's been a fantastic year for you. Long may your successes continue. Happy New Year!


Fat Roland said...

I make one resolution a year, so I don't get too disappointed. 2007's was to see more films, which I achieved. 2008 was to get healthy - I went on to lose 50 lbs (I've been following your weight loss with interest!).

2009? Same as your first resolution, except I expect it will lead to obscurity and dying a pauper.


Sam said...

Gosh, has it been a year? Fair play, you've come miles from those first posts, don't feel down about having done the stuff you set out to do.

In some ways the blogs that got shit when their owners got big were the ones that depended on the context of their lives. However contemptuous you may be of an ordinary blogger you have the skillz to write good stuff whatever is happening in your life - just make your blog about you, and don't forget the funny.

Happy New Year, BdJ.

Maria in Oregon said...

I sort of did #4 last year. I made the most delicious corn chowder EVER! EVER! But next year I resolve to grow about 10 times as much, and freezing it. And my sister-in-law will teach me how to do home canning, and I'll have jars and jars of tomatoes. (You can never have too many tomatoes.)

Have a happy and healthy new year!

True Lateral said...

Well done on your excellent and occasionally nail-biting 2008. My resolution for 2009 is to run often enough to go through at least two pairs of shoes, and run in some events up to and including a half marathon (but not a single pace further). Because life is easier when you feel fit and happy.

Happy New Year!

Anonymous said...

Resolutions are for ppl who aren't already perfect. So i pooh-pooh at them.

You know how a new band struggles to get famous, and then they release an album and get famous, and then their second album is all about how terrible it is being famous, and how soul-destroying and lonely life on the road is, and how they wish that they were just unfamous again? It's an interesting phenomenon, huh.

Some Chilean Woman said...

¡Feliz Año Nuevo! Looking forward to more blogs -I'm a greedy bitch.

Dan said...

I intend to grow my own veg this year too.

God knows where I'm going to get the time though.

All the best for 2009 Mr Jour

Shimacat said...

Hey, happy New Year, all!

My resolution this year is to get married. Visions of hundreds of scared committment-phobic Scots men running for the hills? No worries, the wedding's planned, the bloke is aware (and evden willing). All I have to do is lose seven pounds and turn up on the day. And be fit enough to spend a month on Ducati-back across Spain. So I guess I'd better add some yoga and Pilates into the resolving mix.

Have a wonderful 2009, Stan, and be happy.

DJ Kirkby said...

You got a book deal? Gawd I have been away too long. Congratulations! xo

Anonymous said...

Hello Beau Dedans (scuse my French)

I've spent a large part of the hols reading your blog and just want to say thanks for all the good writing, funny stuff, food for thought etc. I think you're great.

One thing about good looks (which I think I had), at least you don't have to worry about losing them with age, eh? My NY resolution is to develop a personality...

Wishing you happiness, health and satisfaction in your work - you so deserve it.


Clair said...

I think my aim is to be happier. Not sure yet how I'm going to achieve that, but the aim is there at least.

ian said...

#2 means 2009 is off to a good start for me. (I feared you might abandon the blog.)
Happy new year.

Holly Hall said...

Here's the deal:

We all basically the same experiences, the same thoughts, the same happenings. And there are a lot of blogs that sound alike.

But what makes us different, what makes things interesting is how we interprate things, how we feel and understand. Irregardless if it is sad or happy.

And I believe, writing about what makes us happy, what is going right, this type of writing is truly a challenge.

It is very easy to slip into a bitch fest of a blog. But, this type of energy only eats itself up and the blog becomes very tiresome and ugly.

So, write what strikes you emotionally. Get to the base emtions of things. This is the hook. Plus, you obviously have some chops, writing wise.

And as long as you keep combining the two, even your vegtable garden will be an enjoyable topic to read about.

Take care Stan!

I'll be reading.


Mrs. Hall

Tim Footman said...

If you do grow veg, there'll be plenty of pooh-pooh to spread on them.

Anonymous said...

Actually, I do have a proper resolution, which was made apparent by a spectacular bout of fulminating carpet-chewing today. It's to be better at queuing. By 'better', I mean more patient, less vocal and generally sweeter-tempered.

This will not be easy.

Oh, and please get a rescue cat! There are some fabulous little unwanted cats out there. Some are very pretty. One of our rescues is a shaded oriental, who is a real prima-donna, but none the less adorable for that.


iLL Man said...

As a shouty old man in the train station of life myself, no doubt with a fair few bits of things in my beard, I fail to see what the probem is.

Don't think about why you hit the nail on the head this year, just get on with it and write each post like your life depended on it. Will it sustain? Will it fall away? Who gives a fuck, just enjoy it.


Wisewebwoman said...

Many happies in the new penny of 2009, BDJ!
You have soooo inspired me in the past year, my dear.
Onward with your lovely self!

Lily Lane said...

Hooray for continuing the blog! Thanks for your fabulous writing this year, and good luck with your resolutions! With a track-record like yours, though, luck hardly seems necessary.

My resolution is to make a film that doesn't make me flinch (or twitch or cringe or blush or groan) as I watch it, and preferably to get top marks for it.

Catofstripes said...

Seems like I'm a bit late!

My usual resolution is to resolve not to make resolutions. Trite but effective.

However, there is a need to aim for something this year or I fear it will disappear up its own arse again. Just can't decide what it will be yet!

We were considering Bengals as new companions after the demise of the Black Cat last summer, even went to see some at a breeders but that was enough. Can't justify that sort of exploitation so it'll be down to the rescue in a couple of weeks time to see what calls out to me.

I shall watch your veg. gardening with interest and try not to suck on my teeth too much ;-)

Have a wonderful new year, keep writing, enjoy life.

Clare Sudders said...

I'm a bit wary about resolutions. Mostly they don't get kept, at which point they transmute into large sticks for beating yourself with.

But anyway, I have told my son that I resolve to write a book, with chapters, especially for him. A funny one. So, that is, a book which 6-yr-old boys who like to read funny adventure books aimed at 8-yr-old boys and upwards will like. And I'd kind of like to write a couple of others too. But I'd better say no more than that, or I'll jinx it. I currently have what I think is a fantastic novel swilling around my head. It's been there a few weeks now and it seems to be a stayer. It's ludicroulsy ambitious. It's the kind of book that if I described it to anyone they'd look at me doubtfully and advocate caution. So I'm just not bloody telling anyone about it, and I'm still going to write it. So there. But I have to write the kids' book first. And finish one I already started. And have a go at another one that's sort of half-written already. So Ludicrously Ambitious Book may only just get started in 2009, if that.

Sorry. TED*.

*That's Enough Detail.

Clare Sudders said...

Oh yes, and I'm going to try and win a dictionary on Countdown. Or maybe a teapot. I have an audition the day after tomorrow! I'm terribly excited! I've been practising an' evryfink!

Anonymous said...

Bonjour La Bête,
A good resolution is a dead resolution, as some general would have said.
Are you sure you want to learn french ? Mandarin chinese is becoming quite useful nowadays.
Uncle Did

savannah said...

congratulations and happy new year, sugar. no resolutions for me, just to keep on keepin on and enjoy whatever rolls my way. xox