Tom Fogarty & Aladdin

2016 in Review (or why you shouldn’t wax your balls at home)

I usually write a roundup of my shit life at the end of each year, and this time I’m doing it slightly earlier than usual as I’m buggering off to Vietnam for a month in just a few days time. It’s been a very quiet year to be honest – mainly because I’ve been trying to save money for this holiday; so this will only be a short (and boring) post. Hopefully 2016 will end with a bang at least (and not be due to any airport bombings on the way to Asia, fingers crossed) – so I’ll be able to write about my adventures when I get back. In the meantime I’ll pad this blog entry out at the end with a couple of pointless lists that are of little or no interest to anyone but me.

First the good news! After several failed attempts in previous years, I’ve managed to quit smoking this year and as I write this, it is currently 11 months since I smoked a fag. I also managed to get a promotion at work (along with a nice little pay rise to boot) and now I’m a Senior Web Developer. Whatever that means? I’ve changed my drinking habits too, and have drastically reduced the frequency of my pub visits. Any money saved from doing this – in addition to boosting my travel fund – has allowed me to pay for my full back tattoo and go to a lot of gigs (more on this later).

As for the bad news – there was no romance to be had in 2016 and it is the first year that I have lived in my bachelor pad (7 years) where I failed to get my leg over. And as if God hadn’t punished me enough already by blighting me with a baldie bonce in my 20s, 2016 was also the year that saw my remaining hair start to turn grey (spreading at a rate something akin to an outback forest fire). And whereas I’m quite enjoying the salt & pepper effect of my beard hair, having testicles that appear to have been dipped in an ash tray is not such a great look. Even more of a bittersweet pill to swallow considering I gave up cigarettes this year.

To remedy this, I bought a pack of home-waxing strips – and as it turns out Nads For Men is not suitable to be used on your nads – resulting in me almost ripping a nut clean off along with several layers of skin (but unfortunately not a lot of hair). My poor genitalia looks very sorry for itself at the moment and resembles an unwell chicken, afflicted with Avian Flu. In hindsight, maybe it’s not such a bad thing that my mojo has deserted me, at least until by bollocks are ship-shape again and restored to their former glory (with perhaps a touch of Grecian 2000 to restore the colour).

At least I managed to write this post without resorting to referencing all the celebs who died (mainly because I’ve already spoken about most of them in a previous post here).

As promised, here’s a list of the gigs/music performances I went to in 2016:

Kula Shaker
David Rodigan (on several occasions)
The Damned (already written about here)
Lovebox (included LCD Sound System, Jungle & others)
Madness at Clapham Common (also included Toots & The Maytals, Lee Scratch Perry & others)
Sleaford Mods
Super Hans from Peep Show
John Carpenter

And just to be ultra boring, here’s a list of the books I read:

Mad Frank – Mad Frankie Fraser
Down Under – Bill Bryson
The Road to Little Dribbling – Bill Bryson
Shakespeare – Bill Bryson
About a Boy – Nick Hornby
A Long Way Down – Nick Hornby
Millions of Women Are Waiting To Meet You – Sean Thomas
The Birds & Other Stories Daphne Du Maurier
Bulldog Drummond – unknown?
The Five People You Meet in Heaven – Mitch Albom
How To Be Good – Nick Hornby
31 Songs – Nick Hornby
Pincher Martin – William Golding
The Long Firm – Jake Arnott
The Kray Madness – Chris Lambrianou