I Blame the Merlot

Now the Humbug of Christmas is over (sorry, still unrepentant) I can indulge in one of my favourite sofa exercises – R & R – reflecting and reviewing of course. This requires some preparation viz: –

– A full log basket so I don’t have to move again for at least…ooh, lets say three hours;

– A large quantity of high calorific comestibles to stoke up the r & r levels;

– A bottle of something suitable to quench thirst and stimulate creative thinking (last time I did this I found 17 different ways to fall off a sofa);

– A large notebook, a flipchart and quantity of coloured pens (never try to separate a coach and trainer from the flipchart and coloured pens…it’ll end in tears).

Once assembled it’s time to light the blue touch paper of my frontal lobe and we’re ready to begin our dialogue. It goes something like this.

Um, err, well …what’s happened this past twelve months?

Oh bugger I can’t remember, that’s last year, so long ago.

Fool, it’s only three days ago. Think.

You think, you’re the brain.

Well what about your book?

Oh yes, I’d forgotten about that. Time for Your Life it was called.


Didn’t set the world alight. Everyone was too busy living their lives to stop and read it. Paid the bills for a while though.

Thanks to my inspirational idea to licence it.

Ok, Ok, don’t brag. You’re the brain after all; you’re supposed to give me inspirational ideas and come to think of it, you’ve been slacking off in that department recently.

Slacking off! Who came up with all those ideas for mags and rags?

I think you mean magazines and newspapers; don’t be derogatory about a source of income that keeps us in peanuts.

Pays us in peanuts I think you mean

How dare you! Editors everywhere forgive my grey and wrinkly friend here. The Merlot is reaching places where it didn’t oughta go. Moving swiftly on…

If you must, but if you think anyone is going to read your jaundiced maunderings you’ve got rats in your attic.

Ha! Ha! Since you’re the attic…

Oh shut up and get on with it. What else?

There’s Close to the Edge – a sort of ‘Orrible ‘Istory of ‘Olderness for adults wot is languishing in a publisher’s in-tray as we speak…

The adults are languishing in an in-tray?

Gawd, you’re a pedantic git sometimes. You know what I mean. Then of course there’s the French adventure…

That’s for this year; you’re supposed to be looking back – r and r …remember?

Well I can’t remember anymore, except it rained a lot and I grew some fantastic veggies.

How wonderful! Your readers will be riveted…fantastic veggies indeed!

Yes but, if you’d done your job properly I’d be popping with ideas and inspiration. As it is…


And so it goes on until the bottle is empty, the fire burned out and the carpet awash with Quality Street wrappers.

The result?

A blank flipchart, a few doodles in a notebook and the bathroom scales recoil in horror every time I approach them.

So let’s not bother with the who, what, when and why.

Suffice it to say I made it through the year in one piece even though the world didn’t fall at my feet in awe of my limitless talent. Through this blog, I found  a whole lot of lovely people out there who, damn them, are far more talented than me…or should that be I? My grey and wrinkly friend is AWOL this morning.

Oh and of course, blogging opens a whole new motorway of opportunities for being a smart-arse. So to those of you who can and do read this – I hope your New Year brings you all you deserve…did I really write that? It’s a typo, I mean desire…you knew that didn’t you?