I don’t always remember what I say. An awful lot of it isn’t worth remembering. But having had one of my most sociable Christmases in years, I keep getting reminded of things I have said. A friend of mine from my college years, who I met before Christmas, reminded me that I once said that the first line of my autobiography would be “I grew up at a time when every girl had a good pair of black going-out trousers”. Really? Did I? Did they? Don’t they any more? Why not?
According to another college friend, who I met yesterday, I told her that the only worthwhile jobs are in academia. I have no reason to disbelieve her. However, the more time I spend in Trinity College, the more I am convinced that academia is actually a bit crap. This time last year, I would have said that working as a lecturer would be great, but I had to get through the torture of the PhD first. Now, I’m enjoying the PhD, but I don’t particularly want a job in a university. I’m sure I’ll have changed my mind again in a few weeks.
Another time, a friend from work reminded me that I once said that Cheryl Cole’s “Fight for this Love” is an anthem for this generation. Even though I don’t remember saying it, I stand by that one. And always will.
The one and only person who I actually met at one of Connor O’Donoghue’s reunions (I hasten to add that three others came after I left!) reminded me that when I was an undergraduate, I boasted that not only would I be the first Taoiseach (Irish Prime Minister) from the Labour Party, but also that I would, as Taoiseach, perform “Save All Your Kisses For Me” on the Eurovision Song Contest stage with a top hat and cane. The sad thing is that I still wish this were true.
Anyway, New Year’s Eve is a time for looking back, and as I look back over 2011, it hasn’t been awful:
1. Glee’s Christmas episode was excellent this year.
2. I haven’t smoked in seven and a half months.At all. At all.
3. Strasbourg and Cambridge are both lovely and I spent a month in each.
4. JLo made a comeback this year.
5. Ireland had our best showing in the Eurovision in years (the night before I gave up smoking).
6. I have had easily the best Christmas in four years. And it’s not over yet.
7. I saw Oklahoma, the Mikado, Beauty and the Beast, Joseph and his Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat, the Pirates of Penzance and White Christmas live this year. That’s six musicals. Nature’s andipressants.
8. One Direction beat the pants off Matt “Credibility” Cardle in the charts and in life in general.
9. We had two national elections this year. I ❤ voting.
10. I floated.
11. I paid off my taxes for 2008 and 2009.
12. I have paid over 67% of the taxes due for 2010.
13. I renegotiated my debt with Bank of Ireland
14. I successfully bought nail varnish remover.
15. I moved out of my cottage and cut my bills dramatically.
16. I moved into student accommodation and found youth again.
17. Harry won Strictly Come Dancing.
18. I ran. In public, where people can see.
19. I got a scholarship.
20. I submitted actual drafts of actual chapters of my PhD.
21. I got a Christmas card from an actual celebrity. Seriously, the last time I saw a news story about her online, there was a link to a story about Lindsay Lohan next to her photo. That’s real celebrity.
22. I’m not dead yet.
23. Did I mention that I gave up smoking?
24. I got my groove back.
2012 has its challenges. This will be the third (fourth?) January in a row that I start in a penniless state. I’m behind on my taxes, on my rent, on my loan repayments. But that being said, I am in such better financial health than this time last year, that I find it difficult to believe.
Three doctors have recently told me I’m in danger of sudden death. And I weigh an awful lot. I currently weigh 23 stone 11.75 lbs or 333.75 lbs or 151.4 kilos. So, this Christmas I have put on ten and a quarter pounds or 4.7 kilos. I am almost a stone heavier than I was when Project Connor started.
I may have done much, much better at college in the last few months, but I’m still about nine months behind schedule, so that’s serious too.
There are challenges, but I’m ready for them. I have a number of resolutions. Of course. First, there are three weight-related ones I already mentioned here:
1. I’m rejoining Weight Watchers this Wednesday, and will go on Mondays thereafter.
2. On the Tuesday of the following week, I’m going to start swimming lessons. I’ll do at least the eight I’ve paid for.
3. On the Monday of the week after that, I’ll go back to the boxing club in college.
As regards money, I just need to get over this current hump and continue as I was going. I’ll probably be doing a bit more work than I was for the last few months. I’ll pop into the bank manager on Tuesday, and I’ll have my rent for this term paid by the 25th January, as agreed. I think (/hope/have fooled myself into believing) that I’ll actually have quite a bit of spare cash by the middle of February.
My only resolution as regards college is that I will spend as much time there as possible. When I’m actually at my desk, I tend to get lots done.
I have also decided that I will do something writing-related this year. I love writing this blog. I far prefer the written version of me to the actual Connor. I’m not going to specify what I’ll actually do. I might try to get past the first 60 pages of my novel. Or I might do a course. Or I might try writing about something other than myself. Or I might try and get bits of this blog published. I don’t care what. I just want to end 2012 saying I gave something writing-related a proper go.
So that’s it for 2011 – the year I got my groove back. Here’s hoping 2012 is the year Connor gets his groove on.
Love to all and a happy new year!