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January 2006 - Review of the YearWell, wherever else you go, somebody seems to be reviewing the year, so why the heck shouldn't Nick Harvey join in, I was musing to myself earlier on.
Everyone else seems to do their review in their last edition of the old year, however, so my doing it in the first edition of the following year simply seems to add to the perversity of the whole situation.
Mind you, this might be the first edition of the new year, but it has to be prepared in advance you know; so it's, in fact, the last edition I shall write in the old year.
By the time you read this wondrous epic it'll be 2006, yet the keyboard bashing has to take place very late in 2005 in order that you can appreciate the contents promptly, as specifically requested at the end of last month's edition.
So here I am, only half way through the turkey, yet getting ready to look back over bus stops and car washes, cars with chokes and blogs with barmen, weather maps and potholed roads.
Brown chap, leg at each corner and I actually went back to Imber a few days ago. There's no change to the road surface to report, but our favourite burned out tank seems to have some friends visiting.
The farmer's obviously got permission for a bit of special Christmas grazing, as there's an electric fence all around our adopted tank and some of the others, with cows roaming on the land in between them. It all looks very strange and surreal indeed.
Now, this is the point where all you regular devotees out there are following the plot without any difficulty whatsoever, but all you sad irregulars who've simply landed here because you happened to put the words evaginate, mambo and thermoluminescence into a search engine are right up the proverbial creek without a paddle, or USC (WAP) as Mr A of Llandaff so succinctly put it, recently.
You irregulars need to go down to the bottom of the page, click on the left pointing arrows for a dozen or so editions, and then read back forwards, chronologically, in order to understand "the story so far".
I find it quite amusing that Comment for January 2001 is still, by far, my most popular edition. There appear to be educational establishments throughout the English-speaking world who, for some obscure reason, regularly ask their students to do research into television commercials for washing powder.
Off go the students to their favourite search engine and, seconds later, here come all the students to Nick Harvey's Comment. A few thousand people a year seem to do that. It doesn't help the students to any great degree with their studies, as I've absolutely nothing of any consequence to say on the subject, but it does do wonders for my viewing figures.
Now I've managed to use the words again up above, I suppose this edition will be added to the list of most popular ones. It could even become more popular, if you add in all those people turning inside-out, the mambo fans and the odd thermoluminescence expert who will come to this one, rather than the 2001 one.
Watching the statistics for Comment can be an enthralling occupation. Some of the places you viewers come from are quite romantic sounding. We had Monmouth Junction, New Jersey the other day. That has got to be the Merthyr Tydfil of the United States, hasn't it? Nice name, shame about the place.
So, yes, welcome along, everyone, by the way. Happy New Year. I was going to do a look back over the last twelve Comments, wasn't I? Come on, madam, you weren't seriously expecting me to stay on the subject for any length of time were you?
Last January's blogger is still at it. Not as prolific as he once was, but still at it, nonetheless. His latest offering keeps reminding me of the old Arlo Guthrie song, City of New Orleans. One day, I shall write an entire alternative version for him, under the plagiarised title of Jesus Drives a Hatchback Down in Bristol.
February's car wash is still there. I don't know if it's still trapping people within, as I've never been back again to find out. Now, there was one Nick Harvey prediction that DID came true. The older the car, the less it needs washing.
Can't remember what went on in March, so I'll have to come back to that one, now, in a minute.
Hey, going on at this rate, I could be setting myself up for the shortest ever Nick Harvey's Comment award, let alone the most popular. At the current rate of progression, there appear to be only nine more paragraphs left; oh, possibly plus an odd, extra one at the end, to say goodbye in.
Who invented this idea of reviewing the year anyway? Once you actually get a bit more deeply into it, it begins to look horribly like another incredibly lame, BBC excuse for yet another load of repeats.
It IS going to be popular, though. With selected passages from all these past Comments being included in the text for this one as well, all those lovely search engines will be rushing to send viewers to this particular edition like there's no tomorrow.
So, where was I then? Oh, yes, April's child, the one who can't work the old telephone. No progress there, I'm afraid, still marooned at the friend's house with no hope of ever escaping.
A bit of success after May's little epistle, however. They've fixed that corruption on line 11, you'll all be pleased to know. I keep seeing the thing around, every so often, but I'm darned if I can remember where the heck it goes, other than Pewsey, but I DO know it does actually go there now, which is a great relief.
The land turned parched and brown in June, never to return to its true colour. The powers-that-be did raise up the top bit of Scotland after a while, to make it slightly more visible, but that was the nearest I got to a result on that one, or the dirty teeth, for that matter.
I hope all you sad irregulars are still managing to follow this load of complete twaddle; as it's beginning to make no sense whatsoever to me, as I write it, let alone to you, dear viewers.
Never mind, plough on regardless, as the Harvey family motto entreats me from its plaque on the wall above the computer.
I'm still receiving correspondence of the variety described in July's masterpiece and I have little doubt that that Mr Sloane of Mastercare is still sending out his variety, as alluded to in August.
Now, I've already done September up the top, haven't I? You ARE concentrating, back there in the third row, aren't you madam? Good!
That just leaves me with the last three months of the year to try to neatly bash on the head in one short sentence, then, doesn't it?
My October evening walks have been somewhat curtailed by the lack of new shoes in December, so I've been unable to count any more of November's trees, I'm afraid.
There, done it! Hey, it's easy, this reviewing lark, isn't it? I should definitely do it more often.
I can get back to the turkey now and prepare for the excitement that is New Year's Eve. I just need to remember how to set this load of old cobblers up to send itself to the centre of the web universe automatically on the stroke of 2006.
After all, having nagged all you good people about reading it promptly, I'd better make sure the material is available for you to feast your eyes upon, had I not?
Even more of the same, or similar, will be available on February 1st, so I trust you'll all be along to grab a cheerful eyeful of that when it appears.
In the meantime, to both the regulars and the irregulars, the compliments of the season to you all. Right, I'm off, where's me new calendar?
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