Alan Dee: January is almost over, so can we get back to normal please?

Opinion - Alan Dee
Opinion - Alan Dee

Not long now until January is behind us, thank goodness. I can’t wait to see the back of it.

It’s not what you think. I’m not in the grips of some seasonal affected disorder which plunges me into a bleak midwinter depression.

I haven’t been spending sleepless nights worrying about the Christmas credit card bills thudding onto the doormat, sent into a state of soggy despair by the relentless rain or tempted to give up on the human race once and for all by the combined onslaught of TV programmes featuring so-called celebrities falling into swimming pools, falling off mountains or just sitting around in a locked house competing to see which of them is the most self-regarding and stupid.

Those are all expected trials of life, and just because it’s January doesn’t make them any more or less annoying.

No, the reason I am only too eager to say farewell to this particular ordeal by calendar is because all those smug detox dunderheads can finally shut up and get out of my face.

Now we are all familiar with the advice from the experts about how we should take urgent steps to improve our lot, no matter which days and weeks we are crossing off the calendar.

You can tick off all the stuff we are supposed to be doing but don’t – eating less, eating more healthily, taking exercise, kicking tobacco, cutting down on our alcohol intake so that’s more of a tipple treat than an everyday essential.

Well done to all those who have the strength of mind to follow that advice, I am sure it will be a positive step for you.

But please, keep it to yourself. I really don’t care, and I certainly don’t want to know.

You’d think these people were engaged in some sort of heroic quest instead of cutting down for a few weeks.

You get to the end of a trying day, you suggest a swift drink after work to help ease the strain, and that saintly, self-satisfied look comes into their eyes.

There’s no apology on the way as piously tell you that they’re not partaking of that particular poison at the moment, while obviously pitying you for your helpless dependence on the demon drink.

There are even those who will refer to themselves as a ‘dryathlete’ as if not bending the elbow and swallowing quite as often as usual was some sort of Olympic event.

But soon it will be over, and I can’t wait.

However, a simple tip to bear in mind when these self-denying sorts come out of the woodwork next year. Whatever they say they have given up, just look them in the eye and say: “Doctor’s orders? Of course, I understand.”

The implication that they’re on a course of tablets to clear up a nasty infection or other embarrassing medical condition is guaranteed to wipe the smug look off their faces.