hello 2013

You can’t move today for summaries, rundowns, charts, highlights of 2012.  It’s been quite a year.  Whether you are one for resolutions or not, it’s often good to take stock, appreciate all the good things that have happened and try not to ponder too much over the not so good.

2012 was pretty good to us overall.  It’s the year that this blog was born, back in March.  From the 14029 hits it’s had the comments have been largely good ones.  With the odd person who just doesn’t get it, the people who pigeonhole it and those who have never even noticed it.  Some say it’s been funny, some say it’s  very honest.  It’s certainly very personal.  I’ve been asked “who is your audience?”.  The truth is that the audience is me, really.  It’s my way of clearing out my mind, a hobby, something for myself.  It’s a way to use a portion of the brain that I once had.  It’s my dream, that one day I will have something published somewhere.  But I’d be lying if I said that it’s nothing to do with the 14030 hits (they’re rising…).  It’s nice to know you’ve made someone laugh or that someone’s thought “I know how that feels”.  To have 990 hits in one day was pretty cool.  If someone’s thought “what a lot of self-obsessed drivel” then that’s fine too.  Ultimately, it’s me who gets the buzz from writing so if people don’t want to read it, then that’s ok.

Anyway, I plan to keep blogging, so there.  To those of you who’ve supported me, I thank you.  There’s much more to come.

As I type this, with my iPod on shuffle, a song came on.  I have pasted the lyrics below.  If you’ve never heard or read this then I think it’s a treat.  A very sensible way to tackle the coming year, courtesy of Baz Luhrmann.

If I could offer you only one tip for the future, sunscreen would be it.  The long-term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by scientists, whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience.  I will dispense this advice now.

Enjoy the power and beauty of your youth, oh, never mind.  You will not understand the power and beauty of your youth until they’ve faded.  But trust me, in 20 years, you’ll look back at photos of yourself and recall in a way you can’t grasp now how much possibility lay before you and how fabulous you really looked.  You are not as fat as you imagine.
Don’t worry about the future or worry but know that worrying is as affective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubble gum.  The real troubles in your life are apt to be things that never crossed your worried mind.  The kind that blindsides you at 4 p.m. on some idle Tuesday.  Do one thing every day that scares you.
Sing.
Don’t be reckless with other people’s hearts.  Don’t put up with people who are reckless with yours.
Floss.
Don’t waste your time on jealousy.  Sometimes you’re ahead, sometimes you’re behind, the race is long and in the end, it’s only with yourself.  Remember compliments you receive.  Forget the insults, if you succeed in doing this, tell me how.  Keep your old love letters, throw away your old bank statements.
Stretch.
The most interesting people I know didn’t know at 22 what they wanted to do with their lives.  Some of the most interesting 40-year-olds I know still don’t.  Get plenty of calcium, be kind to your knees.  You’ll miss them when they’re gone.
Maybe you’ll marry, maybe you won’t.  Maybe you’ll have children, maybe you won’t.  Maybe you’ll divorce at 40, maybe you’ll dance the ‘Funky Chicken’ on your 75th wedding anniversary.  Whatever you do, don’t congratulate yourself too much, or berate yourself either.  Your choices are half chance, so are everybody else’s.
Enjoy your body, use it every way you can.  Don’t be afraid of it or what other people think of it.  It’s the greatest instrument you’ll ever own.  Dance.  Even if you have nowhere to do it but your own living room.  Read the directions even if you don’t follow them.  Do not read beauty magazines, they will only make you feel ugly.  

Get to know your parents, you never know when they’ll be gone for good.   Be nice to your siblings, they’re your best link to your past and the people most likely to stick with you in the future.

Understand that friends come and go but a precious few, who should hold on.
Work hard to bridge the gaps in geography and lifestyle.  For as the older you get, the more you need the people you knew when you were young.  Live in New York City once but leave before it makes you hard.  Live in northern California once but leave before it makes you soft.
Travel
Accept certain inalienable truths.  Prices will rise, politicians will philander, you, too, will get old.  And when you do, you’ll fantasize that when you were young prices were reasonable, politicians were noble and children respected their elders
Respect your elders
Don’t expect anyone else to support you.  Maybe you have a trust fund, maybe you’ll have a wealthy spouse.  But you never know when either one might run out.
Don’t mess too much with your hair or by the time you’re 40 it will look 85.
Be careful whose advice you buy but be patient with those who supply it. Advice is a form of nostalgia, dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it’s worth.
But trust me on the sunscreen.