Irene Ramsay shares her post-Christmas blues
Waking up in January 2014 and glancing in the mirror has revealed that an entire month of disgusting excess has taken its toll. It all starts with the irritating shops that think it’s Christmas before it’s even Halloween. Before you know it you’re singing Christmas carols and it’s not even December.
Then lo and behold, December smacks you in the face and it’s “Go on, have another, it’s Christmas!” You’re forced to drink drinks like eggnog and mulled wine, both of which are repellent, but you must get in the Christmas spirit. Then the box of Celebrations circulate the office – and you don’t want to be rude or anorexic. Suddenly you’re at Christmas drinks parties slamming tequila shots. The only exercise you manage is punching holes into Christmas cards and hanging them on string. Cards full of awful grinning family photos, when we all know Christmas is a time of incendiary family rows. But of course, it’s that time of year when people make the elementary errors of thinking unfunny things are funny – like Christmas jumpers with protruding reindeers on them. This is only the warm up as well. Between Christmas and New Year the carbohydrate intake seems to increase daily and the eggnog only gets worse, like a gloopy alcoholic protein shake. I shan’t talk about the jumpers.
Some may say I sound like Scrooge. They would be wrong. I enjoy Christmas very much, especially as it brings friends and family together for a few days. I simply regret all that has come before come January. And then the worst comes, people make you give up something you love and call it a ‘resolution’. So now, there are a few in the office who have stubbed out their last banger, resolving to quit smoking. In the transition phase and unwilling to go cold turkey, they opt for the ‘healthier’ e-cigarette, to which they can smoke in the office. Unfortunately it looks slightly like they are smoking a skinny tampon. I suppose I’m being bitter, because I gave up smoking too, regrettably it only lasted a few hours. I didn’t even tell anyone I had plans to give up, because I knew it wouldn’t last. I am ashamed. It’s January too, and it’s cold outside, and the e-cigarettes have stolen my friends.
I understand the smoking ban, and I approve. Constitutionally, I’m no libertarian. I approve of things being banned and various draconian rules; fixed working hours and dress codes etc. I tend not to like grey areas as I like to know where I stand. However, after eight days of dinners and smoking indoors in the comfort of my own home, the ‘January e-cigarette routine’ is giving me the blues. Smoking is a social act; a reliable and powerful way of bonding. The mere act of someone offering me a lighter is a wonderful gesture of friendship. What’s worse is the ostracism makes me look unsavoury. Especially thanks to my new Christmas potato face.
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