To be printed 31/12/09.
This week, this no-man’s land between Christmas and New Year where nobody quite knows what day it is, is all about the inevitable. The inevitable slide into the state of slovenly house slug, leaving the sofa only to snaffle out the last of the cheesey footballs and claim the remote for 100 Greatest Musicals 2 (the 100 that didn’t make it into the first 100).
It is inevitable that you will plan to go for a bracing walk along the seafront, but never make it further than the M&S returns queue. It is inevitable that at some point, you will briefly think you’re having a mild heart attack. This year there are two new inevitabilities: it is inevitable that at whatever point of day you turn on your telly, David Tennant will be on it. And it is inevitable that every columnist in Christendom will be writing a round-up of the noughties. Who am I to buck the trend?
So here we stand today, on the precipice of one decade, about to topple off and land in the next one (or in the arms of a drunk tourist called Julio, if our Trafalgar Square new year plans come to fruition). This time 10 years ago, my mother was stocking the garage with tuna cans and giant bottles of water in case Y2k sent the whole world into millennial meltdown.
It’s ironic, of course, that far from collectively exploding on the stroke of midnight like an updated Cinderella prop, computers went on to change almost every facet of our lives during the subsequent decade. But you don’t need me to tell you that – you’re reading this online, on an iPhone, after I retweeted the link I posted this morning on my blog with my Blackberry. You probably have a robot to hand, making herbal tea and recharging your hover boots.
It is also near-on impossible to write about the noughties without some sort of passing reference to the recession. I have no claims to economic expertise – all I know is that despite enough talk of green shoots to start a branch of Country Fayre, I still can’t afford brand-name mayonnaise. And in keeping with all the cutbacks, I have lost 150 words of this column. So instead of prose, what follows is a list of words that I will forever associate with the last decade, in a vague approximation of chronological order. Enjoy:
Big Brother. Robbie Williams. Opening of New Look, Montague Street. Reebok Classics. Encyclopaedia Encarta (on CD-rom). Will vs Gareth. More Big Brother. Because I’m worth it. Bridget Jones. September 11th . GHD hair straighteners. Nokia 3310. Louise Rennison books. Iraq. Jade Goody. Digital cameras. Latte in massive mugs. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. SATS. The Office. Bacardi Breezers. The Strokes. Girls Aloud. More Big Brother. Yorkie – Not For Girls. Prefect badges. Tsunami. Trinny and Susannah. iPods. Carrie Bradshaw. Yeahbutnobutyeahbut...
Skinny jeans. Atkins. 7/7 bombings. Bush. Pretzel. Myspace. Jamie, Nigella and Gordon. More Big Brother. Pete Doherty. Fake tan. Pret a Manger. Saddam executed.‘It’ bags. Live 8. Sienna Miller. Supersize Me. Doctor Who. WAGs. More Big Brother. Madeleine McCann. Balsamic vinegar. Primark. Simon Cowell. Ugg Boots. Gordon Brown. Musical theatre. Boris Johnson. Organic carrots. Credit Crunch. Peaches Geldof. Facebook. Hurricane Katrina. Leggings, jeggings and treggings. Barack Obama. Crocs. G20. Sachsgate. Strictly. Swine Flu. Michelle Obama’s upper arms. Cheryl’s hair. Gaga’s pants. Michael Jackson. Twitter. Nick Griffin. No more Big Brother.
See you on the other side, folks.