The Diary of Emma D May
Sunday 12.01am: Finally emerging from alcohol and drug-induced haze brought on by New Year festivities, so time to contemplate the year ahead. Resolve, as Dylan says, can be more than just a foul-tasting cure for over-indulgence. This year, I will faithfully endeavour to:

1 Start preparing immediately for transition to maturity, as only three years left till milestone age of 30 - eg will stop drinking pints (student drink) and alcopops (children's drink) and switch to grown-up alcohol like Gin and Tonic, White Wine spritzers and things On The Rocks, thus curtailing development of worrying beer gut.

2 Stop buying cannabis for others - learning lesson from cabinet minister's son - and cut down on intake of skunk weed, as keep losing entire days. Will spend time recovered from Skunk Loss working with homeless and disabled people.

3 Give up giving up smoking.

4 Remember to water cannabis plants every day.

5 Stop being a temp and get permanent proper job to gain personal fulfilment (and so can get paid for taking sickies after big weekend).

6 Withdraw membership from Labour Party in protest at single mother and disability benefit cuts.

7 Not do everything Anna says, as is bad influence.

8 Stop trying to split up Dylan and Lady Camilla, because everyone is entitled to love, even if object of desire is irritating snob who thinks squatting is glamorous but despises the working classes and has huge trust fund but still prefers to live off the dole and scrounge off people with meagre incomes.

9 Stop being mean to ex-boyfriend, as not his fault if he has terrible personality defects, and not sleep with him any more, thereby giving out confusing signals that give him hope for future.

10 Not accept expensive presents or dinners from him.

11 Or ring him up when bored and can't find anyone else to play with.

12 Or ring him drunkenly in middle of night, thereby giving out confusing signals to new, live-in girlfriend.

13 Spend 1998 without making emotional commitment to anyone, thereby having year of fun and preparing for approaching misery years of being thirtysomething, when will probably end up in monogamous, long-term relationship, spending weekends going to garden centre and holding dinner parties where people discuss PEPs and complain about residents' parking.

14 Only play excessively loud music until midnight so elderly lady upstairs can live out her days in peace.

15 Send off application form to Family Fortunes.

16 Improve diet and keep well-stocked larder with grown-up things like foccacia, capers and balsamic vinegar and only one variety of Pot Noodle at a time.

17 Take up some form of exercise other than all-night, stimulant-aided dancing, such as step-aerobics, thus preventing complete physical collapse before age of 28.

18 Buy lots of taupe-coloured boxes from Ikea in order to eliminate clutter from life and label them cleverly like Fergie with things like "socks", "tiaras" etc.

19 Free up psychic space by sending bin bags of clothes and junk to Imperial Cancer Research charity shop, also making an investment for when lungs give way.

20 And not buy any new junk when take clothes in, however tempting the Grange Hill annuals and however kitsch the flying ducks.

21 Will stop using "kitsch" as excuse for bad taste

22 Will stop using "I was off my head" as excuse for bad behaviour.

23 Will stop using "irony" as excuse for everything.

24 Will not punish self for failing to keep resolutions, instead simply repeating mantra: I Want To Change.