2019. A Year in Things I Didn’t Do.

OK, so before we get started with everything I did do in 2019, let’s briefly have a look at what I didn’t. That way, when I do do my ‘best of’ lists (next week, in case you are wondering) you can see why I missed out that thing you thought was the best. Essentially this is a list of apologies that correspond to the categories of my ‘best of’ lists. If that sort of hard-hitting confessional writing is too much for your delicate mind, look away now…

  • Pre-2019 Short Stories – Oh yeah, so I have divided some categories into things that came out last year and things that came out before last year. Only some though, and it is pretty arbitrary which categories I have done it with. I have done it with short stories though so I should probably get on and tell you what I didn’t get round to reading last year. Still on my TBR pile? Oh, God, so much. I still don’t read nearly what I used to manage to. Soz, yeah.
  • Food – Notice how this category is ‘food’ and not the more standard ‘restaurants’? Well, guess what. I didn’t get to many restaurants this year so I broadened it out a little. Hopefully it will make sense when I write it, but I’m not making any promises, chum.
  •  Poetry – I didn’t read as much poetry as I would have liked in 2019, largely because it is so damn expensive, but I probably read more than 99.9% of the population, so I don’t feel I need to grovel too much. Actually, that bit about it being expensive is unfair. Everything is expensive. I don’t mind paying for a poem or two.
  • Superhero Movies – I haven’t got round to Brightburn yet, so my round-up of the year’s superhero movies will be incomplete. I couldn’t get past the idea that what was marketed as a really novel idea for a superhero movie (what if the alien with superpowers that lands on earth uses his powers for bad instead of good) was actually just the plot of every single horror movie ever made.
  • Short Stories – Let’s just say, while I didn’t read nearly enough short stories to have any idea of what were the best of the year, I did read enough to make a few recommendations that are worth your time.
  • Pre-2019 Non-Fiction – I still haven’t got round to really getting to grips with gull identification via the big book about gulls I had for Christmas last year, but you don’t care about gulls, so you aren’t missing out on much.
  • Birds etc – Did I get out and about looking at birds as much as I’d have liked to last year? No. Did I see some birds anyway. Yes, a few.
  • News – I watched all the news last year. I missed nothing.
  • Songs – I listened to all sorts. No need for apologies here.
  • Non-fiction – It is unlikely that I will have read either of the big non-fiction books I got for Christmas (Lydia Davis’ essays and Tove Jansson’s letters) before I write up my list. Sorry about that.
  • Podcasts – I don’t listen to as many as I used to. A lot of them are getting a bit longer, and a bit less amazing, each week. I still like the odd one though, so we’ll muddle through.
  • Pottering – new category alert! I’ll explain when we get there.
  • Films – I really didn’t see a lot at the cinema last year. Bad time planning on my part. No Can You Ever Forgive Me, No Once Upon A Time In Hollywood, No Pain and Glory, No High Life, No The Souvenir, No Us, No The Farewell, No Midsommer, No Hustlers, No Marriage Story, No Toy Story 4, No Ad Astra, No The Lion King, and, as I write this, still recovering from flu, no Little Women yet either. I did see a couple of films though, so I might be able to wing it.
  • Television – Not having Sky, I haven’t seen Chernobyl, Succession, Game of Thrones or Watchmen yet. So expect my 2019 tv roundup to be patchy at best.
  • Comics – I don’t actually read comics. I wait for the collected editions. Easier to store, innit. Anyway, I read some stuff this year. We’ll cope just fine with this one.
  • Novels – Again, don’t sweat it. This one will be fine. I didn’t read some stuff but I did read some other stuff. I read good books.