Update - minutes after I wrote this blog Ollie's dad showed up, safe. It's the best phone call I've ever received.
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It's my 300th blog, this. I'd better make it readworthy.
It's tough to summarise what kind of a year it's been. The frame of mind isn't too good at the moment, my friend Ollie's da went missing recently and there's still no sign. It's in the papers and there are posters and such, so I hope he won't mind me posting this. Just once he knows there's been a sickness to my stomach for eight days now and I hope, I pray that John turns up safe and sound.
So that's what it is at the moment. Everything else, the Christmas jollity and piss-ups and festivities have no lustre, just waiting waiting waiting for news. I'm going to see Ollie on Tuesday.
Anyway, the year.
January seems like almost a year ago. By then all the talk was of impending weddings and stags. Johnny's was first up. He got married in May and we prefaced it by boozing in Liverpool. I recall little, save for a lot of Scouse around the place and sitting where The Beatles once played.
Not much of a Beatles fan so I have no idea why that sticks out among the broken barstools and spottings of Ron from Brookside.
By the time the wedding came I'd fixed on a plan to leave work for four months and go travelling around Europe for two of them.
Nothing goes to plan and it was broken up by spells at home, but even now I think about Strasbourg and Salzburg and Bruges, and I promise myself to get it done again, only in bitier sized chunks.
With so much time and so little to animate myself with, I took blogging to a new level. Well, a new level for me anyway. I'll leave claims of my greatness to my adoring tens of readers.
I've posted over double the amount I ever did before, and made lots of new 'pretend friends' as Rosie would call them. Singling her out, her blog infuriated me throughout the year for its sheer addictiveness. I never got bored.
Terence and Snakevally shined brightly yet intermittently, but at least I got to sup with the lads in person, the former as recently as last night in John Mulligan, the latter on a two-day introduction to Paris that... well.... he knows.
There are many more favourites but just look in the sidebar. I am currently mostly reading NaRocRoc.
In sexier news, there was very little sexier news. Some, but not much. Nakedly answering the front door to my sisters with my semily clad and recently-sired ex in the bedroom, cowering, was amusing in the extreme. Not one I'll live down.
Another romantical episode at Emma and Owen's wedding did not end well for Radge, but not everything can.
Speaking of Owen, he got me the drunkest, fuckedest I've been in all of my days. Galway at the start of July. His stag. Underpant shopping. Busking badly. Shay Given. Morning vodka. Scenes missing.
Post Euro 2008, post France and post Germany and Austria and Belgium and Spain, post weddings, I returned to work but it hasn't been all bad. The lads and the ladies make it bearable, even if I leave of a day wanting to chew my own arms off if it'll get me a sicknote.
And then there's the Homepages book. I always wanted to have some form of story published by the time I was 30, and short as it is I still felt good about it, and hope that it does some good in turn.
So that, my friends, is it. Hold John in your thoughts over the Christmas, may he turn up safely at the door, and I will be back, oh, probably tomorrow. I can't help myself.