Europe's leaders greeted the New Year to issue the completely unwelcome news that 2012 will be worse than 2011
Worse? Is that really possible? Wasn’t 2011 the worst year in history - or something like that?
While the country, the Euro and the world falls apart in 2012, here are 10 reasons why you shouldn’t.
And no Olympics to be seen - lets face it the games could be great, but could equally be a fiasco. Here we go:
Jeremy Paxman: More vicious than a Pit Bull on crystal meth, Paxo has still got it – he can turn the driest interview into a sitcom within three raised eyebrows. With the economy in free-fall, expect him to be asking awkward questions (possibly many times) of the great and good on Newsnight. Please lets have him on more often.
Music: Britain has the world’s best. Go and see the Jim Jones Revue, Black Sabbath and The Stone Roses. On consecutive nights if possible - infinitely better than watching Jools ‘lobotomy’ Holland on the box. If you are young and ‘hip’ or old but wear shell-tops, The Aphex Twin and XX will release albums. If you are not, Madonna will release an album. Coldplay’s ongoing disasters are firmly behind us and there is still no sign of Razorlight. Result! If you like dancing, Andrew Weatherall is still the world’s greatest DJ. We salute you, sir.
Mario Balotelli: With the reputation of the Beautiful Game plummeting thanks to the antics of many of its most prominent players, the enigmatic Italian’s eccentricity has shown us that all is not as bad as it could be. Giving away money to strangers, building a quad-bike racetrack in his garden, buying £1,000 rounds for a whole pub, sword-fighting with rolling pins in curry houses? He even plays football. These tales may or may not be true, but note to the European clubs constantly said to be interested in him: please leave him here – we love him. Could be Italy’s year at Euro 2012 though.
Action to sort out the economy: George ‘Ausgang’ Osborne’s ‘no plan b’ mantra will soon become laughable. Lucky for us we have another chancellor in the cabinet: Vince Cable. He won’t assume the role, but he could win the internal argument over growth and cuts, and so give the economy the chance it desperately needs before civil unrest really starts.
Not the end of the world: The Mayan calender ‘ends’ in 2012 according to the numbers etched on the bricks of the amazing pyramids of central and south America. So obviously that means the world ends too, because the Mayans had all the Zeppelins, photovoltaic power and space telescopes needed to see far into the future. Oh they didn’t? So actually they ran out of bricks? OK so open a beer and relax.
Unfortunately, the country that elected George W Bush twice (twice!) may yet fall victim to one of its bouts of collective madness and elect President Santorum by this time next year
Genetically engineered Broccoli: Called ‘Beneforte’ you can already buy this stuff in M&S but it will be available elsewhere later this year. It contains three times the ‘glucoraphanin’ compared to ordinary broccoli, and it will stop you having both heart disease and cancer, help you see in the dark and make you understand relativity on the first meal. Well, at least now you can enjoy using Viagra without the risk of falling down dead on the job, just by adding a few florets to the Sunday roast. Instant health.
Homeland: If you are staying in, there is some serious joy ahead. US drama ‘Homeland’ brings the paranoia of the 1970s back with terrorism, subterfuge, spying and tons of excitement, to broadcast on Channel 4 in February. How good is it? Up there with The Wire and Breaking Bad. Yes – that good, and worth pulling a sicky if it clashes with your best friend’s wedding. This will be part of a wider trend back to drama and comedy on TV – who wants to see another dancing dog on BGT? Also coming: Titanic – Downtown on a boat - another series of Mad Men, The Hour, the return of Dallas.
Ending dark winter evenings: Who asked for Greenwich Mean Time? It gives us horrible dark evenings just when you need some light. Britain invented the meridian and I’m sure the sun passes over London at midday every day, but this is just not compatible with the 9-5 day. Lets get this sorted once and for all and ditch dark evenings next year . Scottish milkmen may complain, but sod them. They will have their own country in a few years and so can synchronise their time with North Korea if they wish (with apologies to Isaac Newton, Ptolemy, Robert Hook Stephen Hawking et al).
US elections: Barack Obama had an indifferent first term, but ST predicts he will rediscover his mojo, particularly when he is up against one of the motliest of crews ever assembled on a political stage: The Republican nominees. Unfortunately, the country that elected George W Bush twice (twice!) may yet fall victim to one of its bouts of collective madness and elect President Santorum by this time next year. But at least we can start feeling superior again if they do.
The Dark Night Rises: The latest flick by Christopher Nolan completes his take on Batman, with the films on course to become the best trilogy ever made – up there with the Godfather, Toy Story, Sergio Leone’s Man With No Name films and original Star Wars trilogy. So talented is this fella that he is single-handedly re-writing the Hollywood rule book by making Inception - a completely incomprehensible film about dream thieves - that still managed to be exciting and went onto be one of the biggest blockbusters ever. Also look out for Steve McQeen’s ‘Shame’, about to open, Aardman’s Pirates, Nicolas Winding Refn will reunite with Ryan Gosling - the same combo for the amazing ‘Drive’ to produce a Thai boxing film with Kristin Scott Thomas in Only God Forgives, and Stephen Soderbergh’s ‘Haywire’. But The Bourne Legacy without either Paul Greengrass or Matt Damon? Hmmmm.
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