Editor-At-Large: I resolve to moan less (except about Jeremy Clarkson)

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The Independent Online

Boxing Day, the day when I sketch out a fresh set of New Year's resolutions and then put them on one side until they thud into action on 1 January when I wake up realising my body has consumed enough festive units of the alcoholic and calorific kind to keep an army marching for a month. Boxing Day, the time when the Aga goes on a go-slow, my digestive system shuts down, and I find several packets of unwritten Christmas cards hidden under the TV guide.

Boxing Day, the day when I sketch out a fresh set of New Year's resolutions and then put them on one side until they thud into action on 1 January when I wake up realising my body has consumed enough festive units of the alcoholic and calorific kind to keep an army marching for a month. Boxing Day, the time when the Aga goes on a go-slow, my digestive system shuts down, and I find several packets of unwritten Christmas cards hidden under the TV guide.

Boxing Day, when I compile a list of all the habits about myself I will work on rectifying during the coming months. I will swear less, eat less, drink less, work less, moan less, in fact I shall be adopting "less is more" as my mantra for 2005. Boxing Day, the time when I chuck out the yellowing scraps of paper containing all the recipes I tore out of the colour supplements every weekend and never made. Sorry Nigella, Nigel, Mark and Tom - my culinary repertoire is only marginally larger than last year and I still don't know how to bone anything or make polenta.

Boxing Day, when I resolve to keep a proper diary for the coming months so I can emulate Kimberly Quinn and cash in on all my fabulous contacts/shags/enemies. Of course, to truly emulate Kiss 'n' Kimberly, I shall have to keep three diaries simultaneously, one listing my heart-stopping set of business meetings, power breakfasts, brunch briefings and working dinners. This diary will chronicle my purposeful rise up through the ruthless media pyramid of power to become the front-page goddess of the press. The second diary will be a satirical analysis of the day's political and social agenda, featuring my personal contribution to all that is most "relevant" in Britain today. The third diary, written entirely in a runic code, will detail my busy sex life, rating my physical escapades according to how they propel me through the corridors of power. There will be a fourth, totally mundane diary listing my manicures, pedicures, staff movements and calorie intake. If I am truly disciplined and willing to devote more time daily to my diary duties than sex or writing, it should be possible at the end of a year to turn these labours into a six-part TV series, a board game, an amusing cartoon strip, or at the very least, a pop-up advent calendar for 2005.

Boxing Day, the day when you discover the vegetables you meant to cook with the turkey hidden in a black bin bag outside the back door because the fridge was too full. The day when you realise it's been another 365 days and most of your relatives are still not speaking to you - but you've forgotten why. Today will be the day when I have the annual rant about "too much sport on television", I'll vow to keep my loathing of Jeremy Clarkson going for at least another year, and I'll write in to complain about those irritating men in red track suits the BBC think make entertaining continuity breaks.

Today is also the day between the birth of Christ and the birth of JSP. Tomorrow I shall be entertaining 24 friends to supper in a church hall in Yorkshire. I will spend today cooking, wrapping pass-the- parcel packages and testing out the karaoke machine - always frightening when you're sober. I will be selecting the tunes for musical chairs, trying to make sausage rolls that don't look like mutant rolling pins, and discovering that at 57 and 364 days, I still am completely hopeless at decorating a cake. I will be turning my wobbly iced writing into free-form cake graffiti. Luckily my stint in the jungle cooking bush meat and vegetables for the likes of Fran ("I always fry my salad") and Paul ("I am a classically trained French chef but I don't know what a mangetout is") have more than prepared me for the dietary whims of my guests. My celebration dinner will culminate in a dish that sums up the very best of British food - trifle, sodden with alcohol, slathered with cream and decorated with brightly coloured E-numbered hundreds and thousands. Not for me the stark minimalism of Nobu, or the perky pyramid of finely balanced fish and veg of a Gordon Ramsay entrée. No, we're having Lancashire hotpot and pickled cabbage.

I've been practising my singing - the other Saturday at 2am I found myself on backing vocals with Kate Moss at a Christmas party. As the karaoke machine belted out "You're the one that I want", Kate was a vision in floor-length black sequins, pitch-perfect. Me, a mumbling wreck in biker boots and ruching. Luckily, it was several minutes before I realised my microphone wasn't switched on. Hopefully, by the time everyone's eaten the hotpot, sausage rolls and trifle, they'll be too stuffed to comment about my inability to reach the correct note.

A very Happy Boxing Day to all our readers, and to think that Ms Fortier's "third man", the Guardian writer Simon Hoggart, once derided Ann Widdecombe's speech at a Tory party conference by saying she looked like an animated picnic blanket - I have this vision of Simon and Kimberly getting up to some wild antics on a check blanket, and I just can't get it out of my mind ...

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