• Deborah Allen

No happy new year for me.

So that’s it, it’s all over, you’ve had your turkey and your mince pies you might have even watched the Queen on tv.

The wrapping paper is in the bin and you are either pleased with your presents or trying to work out how to take them back without offending the person who gave them to you.

I expect you are now sitting back and waiting for that moment that you can raise your glass and welcome in the new year...

For me this is the last chance I will have to say I hope you have had a merry Christmas and that 2018 will be a happy healthy year for you. But if you were expecting a blog full of happy thoughts and calm serenity think again.

For me this is the worst time of the year. My good mood is about to end abruptly. In the days between Christmas and New Year’s Eve and for a while after that I become a nasty, snarling, screaming monster.

I need one of those yellow jackets with a slogan ‘Avoid until February’ or ’Approach with caution’ printed on it.

I know many people hate January, they hate the dark cold days, they hate the dullness of everything after the twinkle of Christmas fades and they are depressed by the thought of the credit card bill due to drop on the mat, my reasons include none of the above.

In January I growl at children and adults alike, I curse them and call them evil names under my breath, behind their backs and sometimes to their faces, I wish all kinds of horror upon them and why??? Well there are two reasons really, the first being ;

Fireworks... Nasty little explosives that the Dutch are so keen on.

Supposedly there are rules, they can only be sold for two or three days each year and they are only allowed to be let off on New Year’s Eve between the hours of 6pm and 2am. If it were only that simple I would be so happy, but the truth of the matter is that they start sometime in October and they explode without warning until mid-January or later depending on how much the cretinous classes have stockpiled.

Every year the wanton destruction gets worse, dustbins get blown up, bus shelters wrecked, cars and sometimes even buildings get set on fire, yet no one has thought of a way to stop it.

The problem is that I am afraid of fireworks or more to the point I fear the morons who run around the streets throwing fireworks. I’ve seen the damage they can do and having the darn things explode near you is un-nerving to put it mildly.

Plus, I have pets, a parrot who although he is inside still gets easily spooked by the explosions and last year when our neighbour’s teenagers put something like a pipe bomb into the drain outside our house he flew across the room hitting a window and was lucky not to break his neck, and they were lucky my husband didn’t break theirs.

Then there is the dog. I’m not entirely sure how Murphy will react, last year he was only 5 months and he just crept behind a chair and stayed there.

In the past I’ve had dogs who didn’t mind and dogs who loved to stand at the window and watch but I’ve also had dogs who were terrified, who climbed the walls in sheer panic and pissed themselves in fright as the explosions rang out. A dog so traumatised that he wouldn’t walk in the street for weeks afterwards.

I’m not a killjoy and I’m not a negative person but this ‘fun’ is getting beyond a joke.

Its as if some sort of madness takes over the people once a year and they lose all sense of reason. Normally friendly and law-abiding citizens turn into brainless bomb chucking Neanderthals. If you ask them not to throw fireworks at you, your house, your pets or even to just wait until you pass before they light one of their mini bombs you are met with derision and mindless foul language.

Every year the government both local and central say they will consider doing something about the problem because they admit it is a problem, but they never can decide what to do and, so they do nothing. This year they have announced some plan to view the throwing of fireworks at any of the emergency services as attempted murder and I agree with that, but what about the rest of us poor sods? The ones minding their own business trying to get on with day to day life and coming under constant barrage by mini bombs.

If that’s not bad enough when one of these idiots blows a finger off or an eye out everyone starts bleating about how sad it is and what a lovey boy/girl, son/daughter, he/she is/was….

Well here’s a heads up, don’t ask me for sympathy because all I will say is at least it was your own hand or head you blew up and not some innocent person or animal, if you muck about with fireworks more fool you... In fact, if I had my way these idiots would be treated and then jailed for mucking about with explosives.

So, firework fools dealt with there is the other bunch of idiots to contend with.

We all know them it’s the New Year slimming club.

They are the ones who 'find' dieting every January, they scream about their new weight loss plan like a man who has found religion. They preach at everyone else about bad carbs, bad sugars, GI indexes and BMI reducing plans.

The shops join in, even though since November they have been peddling full fat, full cream, 100% sugar in almost every product once January comes around they scream about healthy eating and its 0% of anything. no fat, no sugar, no taste...

Even the book shops join in, the cookery books they have been promoting are delegated to a back room to gather dust whilst the latest fad diet book takes pride of place. We are nagged at by every advertisement on Tv and in newspapers to ‘lose those extra pounds’ and offered ever increasingly daft ways to do it, with teas and pills, powders, and shakes. Snack bars and protein drinks take the place of real food and the nation is swept along on this tide of low fat nonsense.

I hate them. I hate every fad yo-yo diet, I hate the way people are set up to fail on these idiotic diet plans that do not teach nutrition and lifestyle changes that will help people remain healthy, they simply busy themselves with cutting calories and then blaming the dieter if (or rather when) things go wrong. I’ve never been on a diet and I do not intend to start now.

I eat a normal balanced diet all year, a little extra at Christmas but I walk, and swim and my weight has been the same for the last 10 years. No fad diet necessary!

Most of diets only last a month anyway because by valentine’s day every advertiser and shop are trying to shove chocolate down your throat by the kilo and if you resist that temptation don’t worry Easter is coming!!

So, there you have it, the reasons why I am a January hater. If you see me snarling or growling my way down the road making obscene suggestions about what people can do with their fireworks or diet plans you know why.

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