Bridget Jones's Diary: 14713 Russian Roulette. Am going to do it. Am going to do it. Aargh 14713 AARGH ...

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Saturday 15 December

9st 2 (Oh God); alcohol units 6 (vg); cigarettes 32 (better); no. of Christmas cards sent 0; no. of Christmas cards received 2 (1 from garage, 1 from paper boy).

8am Bloody Christmas. Mark Darcy has chucked me. It is supposed to be season of goodwill and everyone is so busy writing Christmas cards to each other and torturing themselves trying to second-guess each other on Christmas gifts that they don't have time to speak. Also even if they did have time would not want to as so pissed-off with each other for occasioning over-busy Christmas hell-rush

8.30am Wonder if postman has come?

8.45am Ooh goody. Have got three more Christmas cards. Two from real people (Magda and Jeremy and Uncle Brian and Auntie Mavis) and one from butcher in desperate attempt to lure me back into world of BSE pies.

Mark Darcy and I had huge row on Tuesday and haven't spoken since. Row was occasioned by fact that I had a) let him arrange for us to go skiing without telling him that I could not actually ski; b) had not yet managed to make Mum listen when I asked if it was OK not to come home for Christmas; and c) because had forgotten about his chambers dinner as unfortunately he told me about it on answerphone and was bit squiffy when got in and listened to it then forgot and invited suicidal friends round that night for matchmaking dinner who all subsequently cancelled anyway.

Anyway. Am going to stuff self with food to cheer self up. Oh God, will probably die then be found five weeks later by neighbours noticing smell, burst on kitchen floor clutching Mr Kipling mince pie.

3pm Even when life all seems to be going wrong, still interesting things happen. V much cheered up. Just had blurry good lunch with Jude who told me about new, terrifying yet strangely thrilling 1471 mutant offspring, Mother of 1471, 1471 from Hell or similar - 14713.

14713 means that if someone rings you then rings off without leaving a message, instead of merely dialling 1471 to find the number of who just called, then either a) spending the next few hours leafing through telephone directories to see who it was, or b) weighing up whether to risk ringing the number to find out who it was, thereby alerting them to the fact that you are sad person so desperate for phone calls that you ring back wrong numbers, you can now play 14713 Russian Roulette.

When the person rings and rings off, simply dial 14713 which immediately rings them back, without alerting you first to what the number is! So there you are, just confronted with the voice, required to explain who you are and what you're doing on their telephone line, with only a split second to recognise their voice and no preparation. Just so scary. Wonder what would happen if just didn't send any Christmas cards?

3.30pm Just called Tom to ask him. He said, the same as every year, except I wouldn't spend five days pretending I was going to. Ooh telephone. Oh my God. It rang off. Mark Darcy, obviously. Am going to do it. Am going to do it. 14713 is test of moral fibre and Sean Connery-like courage. Am going to do it. Right here goes aargh aargh.

Humph. Was Jude. I suppose she thinks that is amusing.

7.30pm Goody. Blind Date is VG. And have written 12 Christmas cards so all need to do is ring lucky prospective recipients up to ask for addresses. Ooh. Telephone.

Has rung off. Very funny. Bet it is Jude again. Oh my God. Can't be Jude she is out at scary party where tall man she fancies will be. Am going to do it. Am going to do it. Aargh 14713 aargh AARGH.

WAS MARK DARCY. Did not know what to say so put phone down.

Oh my God. Phone is ringing. He has 14713'd me. Have to pick up as he knows it's me.

He has put phone down. Oh my God. It's ringing again.

7.45pm It was Mark Darcy. "Bridget?" he said. "What in the name of arse is going on?" As I pointed out it is all very well him saying that as he was 14713ing as well, and him a top human rights lawyer. Anyway he laughed and said he could not bear being without me, and he thought he could probably teach me to ski on a nursery slope and could he come round? Only thing is Mum will kill me now if I go away. Will be bad hateful daughter.

11pm Wild joy. Have spent entire evening in festive bed with Mark Darcy. Suddenly he just went into the other room and said he had a phone call to make, then came back five minutes later and said, "Your mother wants to speak to you." "Oh darling," she said, "I'm so happy for you. Have a lovely time skiing." Then she hissed: "Try to behave normally. He's very rich."

Midnight. Me and Mark were just listening to tape of festive hits and drinking vodka in bed when doorbell rang.

It was Jude, distraught. Turns out she had got chatting to lovely tall guy at scary party and he had asked her to come to the pictures with him. Euphoric, she went over to tell Tom who said, "Oh Jonathan Conrad? He's really nice. I slept with him once and he used to go out with Pretentious Jerome."

Have invited Jude to stay with Mark and me for rest of pre-Christmas period. Singletons must not be alone at this trying time of year as Christmas is for sharing.

Next week, Bridget Jones's Diary will appear on Tuesday 24 December