The current Facebook craze is to use an app which generates a little ebook entitled " 2014 has been a great year, thanks for being a part of it". Sorry to be the ghost of Christmas present, but it hasn't been a great year for me. I'd describe it as mixed at best. I put up a comment on Facebook asking why people I know have had a rotten year, have used the app. Maybe I'm just a bit strange, but I don't really get why we need to say things are great when they are not. Why can't we say "It's been a pretty awful year, thanks for helping me get through it"? I think this is all a symptom of our society, whereby we are forced to say things are great when they are not, we are made to feel bad for not wanting to go to the party and joining in the conga. Generally life is a series of bad things and good things, randomly interspersed. In a good year, the bad things are little bad things and there are not many of them. On Monday a friend of mine missed their train, got soaked going home and got a parking ticket. He remarked that this was typical of the awful year he'd had (lost friends and family, issues at work). In a good year, maybe he'd have taken it on the chin, but he seems to think 2014 has a down on him personally. When I was thinking about this list, I was trying to think when was the last time I had a great year. After much analysis, the last classic year I can remember was 1999. Everything seemed to be going very well then. I was earning loads of money, the studio was on a big upwards swing and myself and my business partner Ernie Ferebee were making big plans for exciting future developments. My mum was alive and in excellent form, going on regular cruises with Mike, her then new partner, my inlaws were in good form and enjoying life. My wife was pregnant with our third child, our eldest was at primary school and enjoying herself. My health was great, what could possibly go wrong? Now that was a great year. Don't get me wrong, there have been plenty of great bits and pieces since then, but there has not been a classic year.
Anyway that's enough Bah Humbug from me. As I said, this has been a mixed year. The bad things? A couple of friends have passed away casting a shadow over the whole thing. I've been working far too hard and making far too little money (I'm a greedy sod). I guess when you have teenagers, there are always issues, but our house is not the calm, tranquil refuge from the stress of the outside world I'd ideally like (having said that I love em and they are great). I've not had nearly enough time for friends, I've not had enough time for making music, doing a paltry one gig all year.
But then again, I don't think it's been a bad year either. There have been enough good things to rescue it. So here is the list of all the things that have saved 2014 for me.
1. Manchester City FC won the Premier League and the League Cup.
2. Watling FC (my sons team) won the Harrow Youth under 14 Division four championship
3. The False Dots gig at the Midland Hotel on Sat 20th December, a great night.
4. My daughter getting 3 A grades at A level (takes after her mum in that department thank God)
5. The Silencerz Featuring Lee Thompson at the Chandos Arms, Colindale in October
6. My Dogs, who every day make me smile
7. My cousin Jim's 40th Annniversary of becoming a Priest and the party for it, seeing family
8. My trip to India in late October and seeing the Taj Mahal, Red Fort etc
9. The Specials at the Roundhouse
10. My Nephew's birthday, where he staged a special cinema screening of the Empire Strikes back.
I hope you had a great year. I am making several new years resolutions, perhaps top of the list is to do everything I can to make 2015 a great year. We can't control many of the things that make a year bad, if we could there'd be no tragedies. But those things we can do something about, we should work on.
So I plan to make more music, see more gigs, catch up with friends I haven't seen for ages, travel and try and go with the flow a bit more.