Thursday, 31 December 2009

The One That Isn't Celebrating. . .

Ahhhh, New Year's Eve. It's a celebration I struggle with. It seems to me to be a wholly false celebration of the marking of passing from one completely arbitrary set of numbers to another completely arbitrary set of numbers. You'd get some odd looks if you got a group of people together stood around in a pub as they enthusiastically count down the last ten seconds of March 15th into March 16th, and then as the clock strikes midnight held hands in a bloody ridiculous fashion and sang a fucking stupid song.

No, NYE is something I find it hard to get excited about. So the calendar moves from 09 to 10. So? It could have been done last week, it could be done next week, next month. Indeed wouldn't it make sense to change the year on the last day of winter/first day of spring? That'd be tidier than having one season over two years. Very slapdash.

The problem is the socialising angle. I am a social animal, but I get annoyed with the concept that on this night of the year, it is almost mandatory to have a good time. It doesn't work like that. I'm unlikely to have a good time tonight, if the production of snot was taxable I'd be in the street by now, and to make matters worse I see Francis Rossi and Rick Parfitt have been given honours for their services to playing the same three chords for the last forty years.

Then there's the question of where to go? A lot of pubs will charge £20 for entry (in advance) with the promise of a buffet and some fizz at midnight. You'll find the buffet is no more than a bowl of cocktail sausages and a tube of pringles and the fizz is some carbonated Bulgarian 2-star petrol, you then realise why you don't go into that pub for the rest of the year as the clientelle are arses to a man. So after an hour you wish you were at home, but you've paid £20 quid, dammit, and you MUST have a good time.

Alternatively there's the pub you do use quite regularly. None of this ticket bollocks there. So by half seven you can't get in the door. If you have got in the door by 7:29, you can't get to the bar. And it's hot, very hot. Your arms are pinned to your side, and if you do manage to wiggle your way to the bar, you're going to get a hot pint because the glasses are being taken right out of the glasswasher. Not that it really matters, because your arms are pinned to your side by the crush of humanity, so you can't pick the glass up. If you do manage to pick it up, you can be assured that some kink in the crowd mechanics will see to it the drink is sloshed out of the glass all down your shirt and over the floor. Still, you've not paid £20 and you MUST have a good time.

Perhaps it's better to be around your friend's house? They're having a little get-together. You'll be able to hear yourself talk, you'll be able to sit down, you'll be able to have a drink. Yes, that sounds much more civilised. So you go to your friend's house, you like your friend, that is one of the defining qualities of your friendship, that you get on. So you trot round, a bottle of decent wine (but not the really good stuff, you can be sure someone will put a dash of lemonade in theirs and ruin it) and some passable chocolate or something to sit on the table with the cocktail sausages, tortilla chips and those funny little baked things with the dip that no-one ever touches. After half an hour you remember the conclusion you came to at their summer BBQ, whilst you like your friend, your friend's friends are all arseholes. Especially the couple where she talks about how her 4 year old is really advanced for her age and is reading Foucault and then goes off on a rant about the problem with the English middle-class, without realising the irony that the problem with the English middle-class is people like her. Her husband/partner, you know the one, fucking stupid hat and a multi-coloured waiscoat over his black turtle-neck jumper, is pouring wine down his ridiculously bearded maw. He gets more lecherous, devastated that he has committed himself to his harridan of a shrew shreiking about the middle classes, he starts to 'accidentally' rub against the other females navigating around the house. He thinks some semi-erudite put down gives him an invisible shield against retribution from other halves of women whose breasts he is now squeezing when any of them come into his reach. And the put down does work, until the proper working class bloke, who has been having his ego massaged by the shrew in some attempt at faux solidarity, launches himself at the bearded wanker and gives him a good old fashioned working-class kicking. It is still only half nine and you MUST have a good time.

Fuck it, I'll spend the evening at home. Except. . .

Most people who drink spirits at home pour well over what they would get in a pub when trying to give a single measure, figures suggest.

Oh, for fuck's sake, can we not be left alone? Not even for one night of the year?

The government's Know Your Limits Campaign found that among 600 people tested, the average amount poured was 38ml, compared with a standard 25ml.

Those aged 31 to 50 - the most generous pourers - gave an average of 57ml.

Well bloody good for them, what kind of cretin put optics up in their house, anyway?

It then bleats on about units and daily limits and women and men and not being a kill joy, but at least I got a fucking invite for this evening, I bet none of these knobjockeys were asked out.

Here's the money-shot.

This advice comes at a welcome time as recent data shows that three quarters of people intend to see in the New Year at home. It is also timely as people think about how they can improve their health in 2010.

Oh, fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck. My health would be improved by my blood pressure not being raised through the roof by reading shit like this.

Hang on, three quarters of people? At home? Perhaps I will go to the pub tonight?

Bollocks to it. I'll be in bed by half ten.

Happy New Year all.

1 comment:

Call me Infidel said...

"The government's Know Your Limits Campaign found that among 600 people tested, the average amount poured was 38ml, compared with a standard 25ml."

I believe it was Clint Eastwood who remarked "A man's gotta know his limitations"

I am with you on the faux celebration of the passing of the year and was myself safely tucked up in bed ignoring the auld lang syne tossers. Fortunately benefit recipient welfare maggots letting off industrial strength fireworks has not become a fixture of the Canadian celebrations (yet).