Submitted by Editor on Fri, 06/01/2012 - 10:46

We’re fast approaching that part of January where we’ve all finished our chocolate iPods and broken our toys, and are looking for something else to numb the pain of another year appearing out of nowhere to further wither our already faded beauty.

Unfortunately, the fact that January is a horrible toe-rag that everybody hates means there isn’t a lot going on. Even the Sunday Market at Stockbridge (Saunders Street, 10am–5pm) has lost its previous allure in the cold light of yet another New Year.  Concrete Wardrobe (50a Broughton Street) isn’t even going to be open on Sundays this month, preferring instead to wait for February’s gentle embrace. DJ Norman will continue to play classic '80s hits at Mezz (49 London Street) on Friday nights, of course, but the sadness in his eyes might just break your heart …

With all that in mind, we think it’s high time the residents of Spurtleshire took matters into their own hands and created some fun. 2012 shall be the year of proactive-ness.  We brainstormed some ideas to get you started.

1. You probably have some notion of getting fit this year, but don’t want to join a gym because it will be full of other people with vague aspirations they have no intention of sticking to. Meanwhile running makes your knee a bit sore, yoga is for hippies, and swimming makes your hair a bit sore. Never fear, we have devised an exciting new spectator sport the whole community can enjoy. The basic premise is to roll down Dundas Street, but the person who does it fastest wins. 

2. If extreme sports aren’t really your thing, you could always visit Simply Bridesmaids (11 Howard Street) and try on everything. Yes, even those comedy ones on the left-hand side of the window display. The law of averages dictates that something will suit you, and if it’s the yellow and pink ruffles with diamanté belt then so be it.

3. Build a fort out of snow. As we haven’t had any snow yet, why not use ice from the freezer. You may need to get your neighbours involved to collate enough, so use this opportunity to get to know them better – you never know when you might want to borrow their stuff. Plus, mercenary is going to be very in this year.

4. They say that life imitates art (although who ‘they’ are has never actually been proven) so why not engage in a little performance-art by hanging out with one of the Antony Gormley statues in the Water of Leith.  Disclaimer: Spurtle cannot be held responsible for injury, pneumonia or any other health problems incurred whilst actually following such a ludicrous suggestion.

5. Mark the anniversary of James Watt’s birth on 19 January by meeting at Inverleith Park to do steam train impressions.  Then on the 25th, why not celebrate the anniversary of Robert Burns’s birth by conducting a séance to see if he wrote any more poetry in the afterlife. It beats sitting on the sidelines at some terrible ceilidh in a school gym hall, and you might discover ‘Tam O’ Shanter II: Back With A Vengeance’.

6. Celebrate Australia Day on 26 January by pretending to be a kangaroo or other Australian symbol if you can think of one ... maybe Ayres Rock. Should you choose the latter, be careful not to show off in front of Calton Hill. You do not want to stoke the flames of that particular feud.

Good luck beating those New Year Blues, dear reader. See you in February.