Today my Christmas/New Year break starts. I have nearly three weeks (ok, two and a half, but nearly three makes it sound much longer) to do all the projects I claim not to have time to do when I’m working full time; I basically get to pretend I’m a student again – more specifically an English student, which means about 9 hours of the day committed (to training) and the rest “studying”, where studying means doing whatever I please.
Doing whatever I please includes setting up for a short film I have rolling around in my head, based on a writer-friend’s short story. I have quite a lot of research and planning to do for it. For the first couple of days, though, I will be writing letters to people I should have been consistently writing to for the past year, but haven’t been. My writing voice will be appropriately chipper and chirpy for my Gran; less so for others who are close friends (one of whom reads this blog – hi M!). The letter I’m really looking forward to writing is to an old flatmate of mine who I recently got in touch with (after the ‘Absent friends’ post, actually). We are three years out of touch (she does not do social networking), there’s a lot to share, and this is a person who analyses life the way I do – ex-academics unite – I’ve missed talking with her a lot.
Christmas/New Year is a weird time. It combines hyper-sociability with far too much introspection in the downtime. Party party drink drink – wait, were you invited to all the parties? Did you get good gifts for people? Did you stick to last year’s resolutions, dear reader? Did you become a better person? The internet and newspapers fill up with ‘New Year New You!’ articles. It’s a bit overwhelming. Then there’s that batch of response articles – “I never wait for New Year to make resolutions etc etc”. I hate those articles even more than the ‘new you’ articles, because they always imply that an attempt to better oneself is a bad thing if you pick New Year to do it. Why? Why shit on someone else’s efforts? So what if most resolutions fail – some of them stick, and that’s great (unless your resolution is to be a bit shittier to the rest of the world. My resolution this year is to get my hair cut regularly – part of project Grow the Fuck Up). Nice and easy*, but a good thing for people who have to actually see my unkempt mop on a day-to-day basis.
Ok- I swore that this blog would have some sort of topic for each entry, but that’s clearly not the case here. I’m wary of putting anything too personal on such an open forum (even though few people actually read this), but I did want to actually write something. Just to keep the entries coming. And I thought of a topic for the next one, so that’s nice.
*Not easy. I hate, HATE, having my haircut. It is fine and thin and wavy, and has to cover quite a lot of head and neck. When short I look like a man; when long I look bedraggled, and inbetween looks like it’s permanently growing out. I am incapable of making small talk when someone is waving scissors around my head and I can’t look at my full reflection in a mirror (seriously) so I piss hairdressers off because I can’t bring myself to look at the haircut in the context of my face. Which is why I hack bits off at home for a year, and then every hairdresser I finally see sighs and says, “Oh dear, when did you last get your hair cut?”
I’ll end this with FOR HEAVEN’S SAKE SUPPORT THE FITZROY! PLEASE! Just £10 will help – WE ARE SO CLOSE! The Fitzroy