Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 20 April 2014

May this auld TV rubbish be forgot ... for the sake of sanity

That's it ... I know it's Christmas that brings out some people's inner Ebenezer but, really, New Year is the worst holiday, isn't it?

New Year's Eve always involves terrible choices. Go out and spend a night in a bar so overcrowded you can't actually move your arms. Or go to a house party and watch someone cry helplessly into their Finnish Reisling as mascara cascades all over their face like some horrendous portent of the year to come. And then wait five hours for a taxi to whisk you home at a fare and a half - the perfect way to start 2013.

Or you could have stayed at home like Jenny No Mates and watched the telly. This year was all too typical of the traditional New Year delights on offer: Graham Norton on BBC1 or Jimmy Carr and 8 Out of 10 Cats (followed by House Party featuring such 'luminaries' as Frankie Knuckles) on C4.

For those of you who realised that life no longer holds even the faintest prospect of joy, there was an old episode of NCIS on Five. And with grinding inevitability Jools Annual Hootenanny proved the usual dreadfully dull parade of 'good taste'.

"The horror, the horror," to quote Mr Kurtz in Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness - and that was before he was reduced to watching Chevy Chase in Fletch (UTV, five minutes after midnight).

Still, for those of you who are today trying to quell a raging hangover with a couple of paracetamol or are staring stricken at your ravaged wallets and purses or are even just trying to blot out the horror of Jason Manford and pals being 'funny' about the past year, have a happy and peaceful 2013.

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