Thursday, December 31, 2009

'Should auld acquaintance and bad times be forgot?'

I've a piece in the Sydney Morning Herald, 'Should auld acquaintance and bad times be forgot?'

I'm arguing for a slightly more ambitious approach to celebrating the passing of the years - less obliteration, more celebration. A sample:

I keenly remember my first big New Year's celebration. I was 15 or 16, and off to a huge party I'd heard about. I was ready for excitement: babes, loud music and a little alcohol. Maybe even a fight, if the music and mood were suitably intoxicating.

But someone called the police, and the party fizzled out. I have a vivid, embarrassing vision of my evening: dressed to the nines in flannel shirt, Body Count T-shirt and jeans, wandering the streets with 10 or so schoolfriends, trying to find another party. We never did.

Since then, I've been to many different New Year's Eve dinners, parties, drinks. Some expensive, some dirt cheap. Some with work, some with mates. Interestingly, most have had the same atmosphere as that night almost two decades ago: aimlessness, anticlimax, all with a whiff of desperation.
(Photo: Rob Chandler)


Rachel Fenton said...

Could you not have just mentioned politely that you didn't want another New Year's invite? ;)

Happy New Year!

Alister Scott said...

Great article.
I was wondering if you could share your thoughts on new years resolutions?
I would love to hear what you think about them.

Damon Young said...

Thanks, Alister.

On the whole, they can work well - if we're serious. But I reckon we'd be better off making resolutions throughout the year - little bets with ourselves, to improve ourselves.

For example, I decided not to eat sweets/desserts for six months - to make sure my running wasn't in vain, and just to test my own resolve.

Obviously this is a trivial example - but it's the sort of thing that can be undertaken when the time's right, rather than just when the calendar clicks over a year.